Trinity students achieve National Merit Scholarship award


Photo courtesy of Hannah Eisiminger

National Merit Scholarship winners, Brett Phillips and Rayne Elling as they were awarded during the Fall Sports Pep Assembly on September 22, 2022. Phillips, Elling and Riddell were presented with this award after the sports captain showcase during the THS Pep Assembly.

The National Merit Scholarship is not a common award at Trinity High School. It is only given to the most dedicated students in the school. In the class of 2023, Emma Riddell, Rayne Elling and Brett Phillips were recipients.

It is given by the National Merit Scholarship Program, a non-profit organization that awards students based on their academic performance on the PSAT/NMSQT test in their junior year of high school. This year, the seniors who achieved this reward were Riddell, Elling and Phillips. They were presented with these awards at the Fall Sports Pep Assembly and were met with huge applause from other students at THS.

The families of the award recipients also felt the same level of pride for their children, as they were all very proud of the hard work put in to achieve this distinction. Even though the recipients of this award only received recognition from the College Board and National Merit Scholarship, they all intend to use this award to boost their resumes for college applications.

Each of the winners also gave informative advice to those trying for this honor, with each stressing the need and importance of studying and practicing for the exam and its question types. Each said practicing is more about learning the test, and not really specific facts or skills.

 Phillips commented, “I would advise them to practice for the SAT and PSAT, especially over the summer. I started very early on [in freshman year.]”

The school’s recognition also signified that both sports and academics are important for student pride. Despite being told beforehand about being called down at the assembly, they were all nervous. 

Riddell commented on her nervousness, “I was a little nervous to be in front of the entire school, but excited to be recognized.”

The recognition of this award may distinguish them from other THS students, but the winners did not feel like it would be particularly useful past a note on a resume, as Elling felt that, “with the colleges I’m looking at, I don’t think so. Everyone is already at that level.”

This recognition of its students truly shows that both the school itself and its students are proud of those who achieved the National Merit Scholarship award.