SJA Students Named National Merit Semifinalist, Commended Student

September 24, 2018

Senior Fiona Sweeney of Piermont, New Hampshire, has been selected as a Semifinalist in the 2019 National Merit Scholarship Competition. She is among approximately 16,000 qualifying students out of about 1.6 million juniors who took the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) nationwide. Approximately 90% of the 16,000 Semifinalists go on to become Finalists, of which 50% win a National Merit Scholarship.


Additionally, senior Alexander Gates was named a Commended Student in the 2019 National Merit Program. This designation represents about 34,000 of the 1.6 million juniors who took the test.


Academy Headmaster Tom Lovett said, “Fiona and Alex are excellent examples of what it means to be a scholar. They value knowledge and understanding more than grades and work hard to maximize their academic potential. As a result, although it is quite an honor for them to be selected as a Semifinalist and Commended Student, I am more impressed by the fact that these students have demonstrated the intellectual character and enthusiasm for learning that mark the very best scholars. They and their families should be very proud.”


Additional information about the National Merit Scholarship Program is available by visiting

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