Nicole Kohansamad, a senior at Bishop García Diego High School, is among about 16,000 semifinalists in the 53rd annual National Merit Scholarship Program.

Article Image

Nicole Kohansamad

The academically talented high school seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for 8,200 Merit Scholarship awards, worth $34 million, that will be offered next spring.

To be considered for a Merit Scholarship award, semifinalists must advance to the finalist level of the competition by fulfilling several requirements. About 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to attain finalist standing, and about half of the finalists will be selected as Merit Scholarship winners, earning the Merit Scholar title.

Kohansamad’s personal achievements include an active role in student government at Bishop Garcia Diego High School. She was sophomore class treasurer and junior class president, and now is a senior class officer and this year’s president of Bishop High’s National Honor Society.

Additionally she is a member of Mu Alpha Theta, the National High School and Two-Year College Mathematics Honor Society. As an athlete, Kohansamad was captain of the JV tennis team in 2007 and was co-captain of the varsity tennis team in 2008. She is a Bishop ambassador, representing BGDHS in public relations and community outreach.

In her community, Kohansamad served as treasurer of SBORTY Jewish youth group. In 2007, she attend Yale summer school, and in 2008 joined her peers at the Rotary Youth Leadership Awards Program. Kohansamad hopes to attend Stanford University in the fall.

Debbie Herrera is director of admissions and public relations of Bishop Garcia Diego High School.