Dobyns-Bennett High School Students Recognized in National Merit Scholarship Program

Published on September 11, 2019 at 9:15 a.m.
Kingsport, Tenn. – Seven Dobyns-Bennett High School students have been named as Semifinalists in the 65th Annual 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program, a program designed to identify and honor the top high school students in the United States.

Those named as National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists from Dobyns-Bennett are George Armentrout, son of Scott and Sheila Armentrout, Arnab Dey, son of Nabin and Piyali Day, Benjamin Floyd, son of Gary and Jean Floyd, Ethan Maness, son of Michael and Karen Maness, Lillian McCloud, daughter of Brian and Megan McCloud, Vikram Nathan, son of Sam and Rohini Nathan, and Kendrick Tate, son of Brian and Tonya Tate.  These seven students will compete with the top high school students in the nation for some 7,600 National Merit Scholarships worth more than $31 million that will be offered in spring 2020.

Over 1.5 million juniors in about 21,000 high schools entered the 2020 completion by taking the 2018 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT), which served as an initial screening of program entrants. The nationwide pool of Semifinalists represents less than one percent of U.S. high school seniors and includes the highest scoring entrants in each state. Merit Scholar designees are selected on the basis of their skills, accomplishments, and potential for success in rigorous college studies, without regard to gender, race, ethnic origin, or religious preference.

"To have seven National Merit Semifinalists as students at D-B is an honor and a testament to both the quality of these individuals and the educators that have supported them," said Dobyns-Bennett High School Principal Dr. Chris Hampton. "These students have demonstrated excellence in the classroom and served as outstanding leaders in many other school organizations. I have tremendous confidence they will experience great success in their futures and am excited to see how they will impact our community with their talents and abilities."

To become a Finalist, the Semifinalist and his/her high school must submit a detailed scholarship application, in which information is provided regarding the Semifinalist’s academic record, participation in school/community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities, employment and honors/awards received. A Semifinalist must have an outstanding academic record throughout high school, be endorsed and recommended by a high school official, write an essay, and earn SAT scores that confirm the student’s earlier performance on the qualifying test.

From approximately 16,000 students qualified as Semifinalists, about 90 percent of the semifinalists are expected to advance to the Finalist standing, and more than half of the Finalists will win a National Merit Scholarship, earning the Merit Scholar® title. National Merit Scholarship winners of 2020 will be announced beginning in April and concluding in July.

For more information on the National Merit Scholarship Program, please contact the Dobyns-Bennett High School Counseling Office at (423) 378.8409 or visit


Kingsport City Schools (KCS) is a public school district located in Kingsport, Tenn., serving students in Sullivan and Hawkins county. The district is comprised of 13 schools, including a Pre-K, eight elementary schools, two middle schools, one high school, a high school program of choice and an alternative learning program; with total enrollment over 7,700 students. The vision of Kingsport City Schools is to Inspire. Cultivate. Impact.

For more information on KCS, visit, listen live on WCSK 90.3 FM, The Voice of KCS and download our mobile app for Apple / Android devices or call (423) 378.2100. We’re social too; follow us on Facebook (Kingsport City Schools), Twitter (@KCS_District), Instagram (@KCS_District), and LinkedIn (Kingsport City Schools). Read our blog, We Are KCS and check out our YouTube Channel (KPTSchools).  


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