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UCS senior among 2,500 nationally named a National Merit Scholar

Brandan Pawlicki

Among only 2,500 students nationally and less than 80 graduates statewide, a Utica Community Schools senior has been named a National Merit scholarship winner.

Brendan Pawlicki, of the Gene L. Klida Utica Academy for International Studies (GLK-UAIS), has earned a $2,500 scholarship through the National Merit Corporation. 

Pawlicki, a valedictorian, plans to study finance at the University of Michigan Ross School of Business.

National Merit Scholarship winners are judged to have the strongest combination of accomplishments, skills, and potential for success in rigorous college studies. The number of winners named in each state is proportional to the state’s percentage of the nation’s graduating high school seniors.

The winners were selected by a committee of college admissions officers and high school counselors, who appraised a substantial amount of information submitted by both the finalists and their high schools: the academic record, including difficulty level of subjects studied and grades earned; scores from two standardized tests; contributions and leadership in school and community activities; an essay written by the finalist; and a recommendation written by a high school official.

Students initially qualify for the Merit program by being among the top one percent of students in the country taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.

This year, Utica Community Schools had five National Merit semi-finalists.