Twenty students in Pinellas County have been named semifinalists in the 59th-annual National Merit Scholarship Program.
The students are among about 16,000 semifinalists nationwide — less than 1 percent of all high school students — and will compete for about $35 million in scholarships. The top individual award is $2,500.
The students were selected as high school juniors based on their scores on the 2012 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.
Local semifinalists are:
Emily F. McMullen, Canterbury School of Florida, St. Petersburg
Ashley N. Williams, Countryside High School, Clearwater
Drake C. Breeding, • East Lake High School, Tarpon Springs
Christian Brands, home-school student
Lauren A. Wittine, home-school student
Sean M. Hofer, • Lakewood High School Center for Advanced Technologies, St. Petersburg
Emma M. Freeman, Palm Harbor University High School
Zaydi Javeed, Palm Harbor University High School
Justin P. Ma, Palm Harbor University High School
Aadith Moorthy, Palm Harbor University High School
Mohamed Nuh, Palm Harbor University High School
Joeli R. Roth, Palm Harbor University High School
Natalie Wilson, Palm Harbor University High School
Alexander R. Dolan, Seminole High School
Benjamin G. Connelly, St. Petersburg High School
Joshua C. Grubbs, St. Petersburg High School
Reuben A. Russak-Pribble, St. Petersburg High School
Meghan F. Gardner, Shorecrest Preparatory School, St. Petersburg
Adrianna Wenz, Shorecrest Preparatory School, St. Petersburg
James F. Wenz, Shorecrest Preparatory School, St. Petersburg
About 8,000 students will be awarded one of three types of scholarships in the spring: $2,500 National Merit Scholarships, business-sponsored scholarships and scholarships from individual colleges, which will go to about 4,800 students.
Winners will be announced from April through July.