Aline Irihamye of Lexington and Naomi Kellogg of Elizabethtown, both seniors in the Gatton Academy of Mathematics and Science in Kentucky at WKU, have been recognized as semifinalists in the National Achievement Scholarship Program, an honor which potentially opens the door to college scholarship opportunities.
The National Achievement Scholarship Program is an academic competition established in 1964 specifically to honor scholastically talented Black American high school students and provide college scholarships for a substantial number of the most outstanding participants in each annual competition. More than 1.5 million students take the Preliminary SAT/ National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test each year and approximately 160,000 students request consideration for the National Achievement Program. About 1,600 of the highest scoring applicants for the National Achievement Program are honored as semifinalists.
To be considered in the rigorous competition for National Achievement scholarships, Semifinalists must advance to the Finalist level of the competition by meeting additional standards and fulfilling several requirements. These include having a record of very high academic performance of college preparatory course work, leadership and school involvement, submitting SAT scores that confirm PSAT performance, and being fully endorsed and recommended by a high school official.
Since students take the qualifying PSAT exam in October of their junior year of high school, much of the preparation stems from learning opportunities during their freshman and sophomore years of high school. The Gatton Academy builds on those experiences to provide students with a robust application and preparation for the SAT, a critical component in becoming a finalist.
"These young ladies exemplify excellence in every aspect of their lives," said Dr. Tim Gott, Gatton Academy Director. "This recognition is just another affirmation of their hard work and dedication. Aline and Naomi are outstanding role models for all of Kentucky's students."