68 National Merit Semifinalists Announced

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  • National Merit Semifinalists pose for a group photo. In order to qualify to be a semifinalist, Seniors had to score highly on their Junior year PSATs.

    courtesy of Holly Browning

  • Principal Erin Campbell and Sofia Shah ’23 pose for a photo at the ceremony. Semifinalists were called up to receive their yard signs individually.

  • Aria Merchant ’23 poses for a photo against a green screen after the ceremony. Students were able to pose for individual ceremonies after receiving their yard signs.

  • Shreya Tiwari ’23 reaches for a muffin from a table of refreshments. Students and parents were able to enjoy coffee and pastries after the ceremony.

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On Wednesday, Sept. 14, 68 seniors gathered before school in the small gym to celebrate their selection as National Merit Scholarship semi-finalists.

“Only 0.5 percent of the people who take the test qualify for this,” Adarsh Ambekar ‘23 said. “So it’s a symbol that if I work for it, whatever comes in the future is gonna be good.”

As determined by their Junior year PSAT scores, these students represent the best of Westwood’s scholarly dedication, and are the biggest group in the state of Texas. During the ceremony, parents packed into the bleachers and applauded the semi-finalists as they received honorary yard signs from Principal Erin Campbell. But the students’ journey is far from over; to progress with the scholarship, they must undergo a completely separate application process, complete with essays and endorsements.

Below is the full list of National Merit Semifinalists:

Lasya Adivi

Amoli Agarwal

Manika Aggarwal

Adarsh Ambekar

Sanjay Amirthraj

Jyotsna Arunkumar

Anandatheertha Bapu

Luke Brandes

Emilia Cichocki

Vijay Dagupati

Aditi Dalal

Venthan Dinesh

Akshay Gaitonde

Aaditya Ganesan

Shreya Ganti

Alice Guo

Arsh Gupta

Susan Hamilton

Kevin Han 

Benjamin He

Steven He 

Aanika Hirode

Anna Irmetova

Ashish Jacob

Brian Jeon

Pranav Katragadda

Kavita Kohli

Valentina Larina

David Lee

Hyunjae Lee

Jessica Li

Ethan Liu

Sophia Louie

Arnav Machavarapu

Aakanksha Mahajan

Aria Merchant

lshanvi Mishra

Suhaas Patil

Srihasa Penchikala

Prithiv Premkumar

Jessamine Qu

Akhila Rajesh

Rajonna Sen

Sofia Shah 

Ishaan Sharma

Sohum Sharma

Joyce Shen

Cassandra Smith

Elie Soloveichik

Prayag Sreenivasan

Armaan Srireddy

Anupama Subramanian

Ariel Sun

Jasmine Sureka

Brandi Tai

Yashwitha Reddy Thindi

Shreya Tiwari

Aneesh Vanguri

Vibha Velur

Hanyu Wei

Ai Ni Wu

Kevin Xiao

Anya Yaksh

Olivia Yang 

Wesley Yeung

Sophia Zhong

Cindy Zhu

Caroline Zhuang