ORHS Students Commended by National Merit Scholarship

A photo montage of three headshot photos of the Commended students.

Oyster River High School seniors from left, Owen Nelan, Chris Hawley and James Li.

Edited: 12/06/2023 This story was also published by Seacoastonline.com

Three Oyster River High School Seniors Commended by National Merit Scholarship Program


DURHAM – Principal Rebecca Noe is pleased to announce that three Oyster River High School seniors have been named Commended Students in the 2024 National Merit Scholarship Program.

Commended Scholars Owen Nelan, Chris Hawley and James Li are recognized for their exceptional academic promise demonstrated by scoring among the 50,000 highest scorers nationwide on the 2022 Preliminary/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test.

Nelan, Hawley and Li will receive letters of commendation from the National Merit Scholarship Corporation, which conducts the program, and from the district.

"If it weren't for my teachers, parents, and everyone else who helped me, I wouldn't have accomplished this," said Nelan.

“I am thankful to be recognized with a National Merit Scholarship Letter of Commendation. It’s like a pat on the back for all those late-night study sessions and preparation. Being recognized with an award like this makes the hard work feel worthwhile," said Hawley.

"This experience helped me become a more responsible and resilient person," said Li.


About National Merit Scholarship Corporation

Since its founding, NMSC has recognized over 3.4 million students and provided some 451,000 scholarships worth over $1.8 billion. The honors awarded by NMSC to exceptionally able students are viewed as definitive marks of excellence. Recipients of Merit Scholarship® awards, Achievement Scholarship® awards, and corporate-sponsored Special Scholarships have increased the nation’s respect for intellectual accomplishments and have contributed significantly to its talent pool of future leaders.