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Gwinnett seniors named College-Sponsored National Merit Scholarship winners

July 31, 2023

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) has named six members of Gwinnett County Public Schools’ (GCPS) Class of 2023 recipients of 2023 National Merit Scholarships financed by U.S. colleges and universities.

The winners are:

Gwinnett School Of Mathematics, Science, and Technology:

Timothy Nguyen

Probable career field: Software Engineering

National Merit Emory University Scholarship


Joey T. Xie

Probable career field: Medicine

National Merit Vanderbilt University Scholarship


Joshua D. Caruso

Probable career field: Fine Arts

National Merit University of Alabama in Huntsville Platinum Scholarship


Rachel C. Han

Probable career field: Undecided

National Merit Fordham University Scholarship


Norcross High School:

Jordan A. Katz

Probable career field: Music

National Merit Vanderbilt University Scholarship


Grayson High School:

Fatima Manzar

Probable career field: Medicine

National Merit University of Georgia Scholarship

     The National Merit Scholars are part of a group of distinguished students nationwide judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. Officials of each sponsor college selected their winners from among finalists in the National Merit Scholarship Program who will attend their institution. The scholarships provide between $500 and $2,000 annually for up to four years of undergraduate study at the institution financing the scholarship.

     This year, 153 colleges and universities are sponsoring more than 3,800 Merit Scholarship awards. Sponsor colleges include 81 private and 72 public institutions located in 42 states and the District of Columbia. This final group of winners brings the number of 2023 National Merit Scholars to more than 7,140. These distinguished high school graduates will receive scholarships for undergraduate study worth a total of nearly $28 million.

     This year’s competition for National Merit Scholarships began when high school juniors took the 2021 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT®), which served as an initial screen of program entrants. In September 2022, more than 16,000 Semifinalists were named on a state-representational basis in numbers proportional to each state’s percentage of the national total of graduating high school seniors. Semifinalists were the highest scoring program entrants in each state and represented less than one percent of the nation’s seniors.    

     To become a Finalist, each Semifinalist had to complete a detailed scholarship application, which included writing an essay, describing leadership positions and contributions in school and community activities, showing an outstanding academic record, and being endorsed and recommended by a high school official. Semifinalists also had to take the SAT® or ACT® and earn scores that confirmed their performance on the initial qualifying test. From the Semifinalist group, more than 15,000 attained Finalist standing, and about half of the Finalists were chosen to receive National Merit Scholarships.