Thursday, October 2, 2003

19 from Greater Cincinnati are Achievement semifinalists

By Sue Kiesewetter
Enquirer contributor

Roger Bacon: Ericka Spears
Cincinnati Hills Christian: Kya Cannon
Lakota West: Kristal Dobbins
Princeton: Cherie Garvis
Seven Hills: Lena Eastin, Damon Jason
St. Ursula: Faith Brown, Melanie Murphy
St. Xavier: Jerome Raphael
Sycamore: Sydney Morton
Talawanda: Michael Obilado
Walnut Hills: Jessica Chapman, Heaven Gaines, Kenzel Gilliam, Branden Thomas, Ashley Tioller, Carol Udoh
Wyoming: Chelsea Crawford
Ryle: Crystal Woodard
Nineteen Greater Cincinnati seniors - 18 from Southwest Ohio and one from Northern Kentucky - were among 1,600 semifinalists announced Wednesday in the 40th annual National Achievement Scholarship Program.

Walnut Hills High School, with six semifinalists, had the greatest number of Ohio seniors honored.

The program recognizes African-American students through the National Merit Scholarship Corp., the same group that sponsors the National Merit scholarship program.

"Walnut Hills has a tradition of excellence, and it looks like the current crop of students are living up to that tradition,'' said Janet Walsh, spokeswoman for Cincinnati Public Schools.

The semifinalists are among 120,000 high school juniors who entered the achievement program by requesting consideration when they took the 2002 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.

Three of the achievement semifinalists - Melanie Murphy, St. Ursula Academy; Cherie Garvis, Princeton High School; and Kristal Dobbins, Lakota West High School - were also named National Merit semifinalists last month.

To attain finalist standing, achievement semifinalists have to be recommended by their high school principal, write an essay and meet other requirements.

Finalists are eligible for 775 Achievement Scholarship awards, worth $2.7 million that will be offered this spring.

They include National Achievement $2,500 scholarships that will be offered on a regional representation basis, corporate-sponsored awards and college/university scholarships.

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