The highest achieving high schools students in America are classified as National Merit Scholars.
A few weeks ago, Pocahontas County High School senior Taylor Tegtmeyer was notified that he is a National Merit Semifinalists, making him one step closer to being a Scholar.
“It was pretty cool, but it didn’t really hit me until a couple days after I got it,” he said. “It was really awesome to find out I got it. I’m hoping I get finalist.”
Students are selected as semifinalist through evaluation of their PSAT scores. Students are given a National Merit index and those above a certain limit move on to the next round to become scholars.
Tegtmeyer has filled out a form and sent more information about himself to the National Merit Scholarship Corporation and will soon find out if he is a finalist.
For now, he’s focused on school and his plans for the future.
“I’m going to try to go to Virginia Tech,” he said. “I’m going to probably get a degree in mechanical engineering and hopefully start to specialize in nuclear engineering, but that might change. That’s my goal right now.”
Tegtmeyer said he wants to be part of the solution to help get power in a sustainable way.
“Everyone needs power and nuclear is a relatively safe way to get it – renewably, sustainably,” he said. “I want to be there if it takes off again, and I want to make new developments.”
The son of Ty and Tricia Tegtmeyer, he is the president of the National Honor Society and a member of the STEM club, track team and archery team.