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National Merit Scholarship

National Merit Scholarship

The National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC) is offering the National Merit Scholarship Program to identify and honour academically talented US high school students.

The award is an academic competition that invites approximately 1.6 million high school students each year in the United States.

  • Award
  • Application Process
  • Clarity of Information


Excellent opportunity for high school students.

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NMSC was established in 1955 as an independent, not-for-profit organization that works without government support. Since its opening, it has recognized over 3.3 million students and offered some 432,000 grants value over $1.7 billion.

Brief Description

  • University or Organization: National Merit Scholarship Corporation
  • Department: NA
  • Course Level: Undergraduate
  • Award: $2,500 each
  • Access Mode: Online
  • Number of Awards: NA
  • Nationality: US Citizen
  • Awards can be taken in the USA


  • Eligible Countries: Applications only open for the United States
  • Acceptable Course or Subjects: The awards will be awarded the undergraduate study in any subject.
  • Admissible Criteria: To participate in the National Merit® Scholarship Program, a student must check the following:
  1. Take the PSAT/NMSQT® in the definite high school program year and no later than the 3rd year in grades 9 through 12, regardless of grade classification or learning pattern.
  2. Must be registered as a high school student in traditional or homeschooled, moving ahead usually for graduation or high school completion and planning to admit to college no later than the fall following completion of high school.
  3. Join a high school in the United States, the District of Columbia, or US commonwealth and territory; or check the citizenship requirements for students attending high school outside the United States:
  • Students attending high school outside the US: Students joining high school outside the US should be a US citizen, or be a US lawful resident (or have applied for permanent residence) and intend to become a US citizen at the earliest chance allowed by law.

How to Apply

  • How to Apply: Students must submit a National Merit Scholarship Application to your high school office by using NMSC’s Online Scholarship Application (OSA).
  • Note: On test day, students are asked some questions to determine entry to the National Merit Scholarship Program.
  • Supporting Documents: If you attend high school outside the United States and have not yet become a US citizen, to become a Finalist must submit with the completed Application: A letter signed by you explaining your ideas for becoming a citizen, including the date on which you expect to be eligible and will apply for US citizenship.
  • And, if you are a US lawful permanent resident, a Permanent Resident Card (Green Card) copy; or a passport copy together with the identity/biographical page and the “I-551” stamp showing that you have been approved lawful permanent resident status.
  • Or, if you have applied for US lawful permanent residence, a copy of Form I-797 Receipt Notice from US Citizenship and Immigration Services (CIS) that verifies you filed the “Application to Register Permanent Residence or Adjust Status” (Form I-485).
  • NMSC must receive your letter and documentation on or before January 31, 2020.
  • Entry Requirements: High School students must meet the program entry and participation requirements for the National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the PSAT/NMSQT at the specified time in the high school program, usually as juniors.
  • Language Requirement: All students need appropriate English language skills to achieve the National Merit® Scholarship Program.


  • The winner of the National Merit Scholarship will receive $ 2500 support for college studies.
  • The award can be applied only for attendance at a US college or university that holds accredited position with a regional accrediting commission on higher education.

Application Deadline: January 31, 2020.

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