Kennell receives Commended Student distinction

Every year, sophomores and juniors gather in the lecture hall to participate in the PSAT. Students enter the National Merit Scholarship competition by taking the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). Senior Joshua Kennell was recognized as a Commended Student with the 2020 National Merit Scholarship Program on Sept. 25. Kennel was the only senior at the high school recognized as a Commended Student recipient.
Although Kennell will not continue in the 2020 competition for National Merit Scholarship awards, Commended Students placed among the top 50,000 scorers of more than 1.5 million students who entered the 2020 competition. Approximately 34,000 Commended Students are recognized throughout the nation.
“Josh is being recognized as a Commended Student with the National Merit Scholarship Program,” principal Lisa Moore said. “That means that he scored very well on the PSAT\; however, it does not qualify him to move forward in the scholarship program. NHS will formally recognize Josh at the Senior Awards Night in the spring of 2020.”
Kennell expresses he did not spend much more than an hour studying for the PSAT. He studied by taking practice tests and partaking in other practice strategizes provided on the National Merit Scholarship website (
“The PSAT was a good chance to just get practice with standardized tests for the ACT,” Kennell said. “My dad told me about how there was a scholarship connected to it, so I studied a little bit and I just tried my hardest.”
Kennell hopes to study biology at a small four-year private liberal arts college such as Bethel College or Goshen College. He advises taking the PSAT your sophomore year that way you know more of what it is like your junior year.
“Even if you don’t think you’ll get the scholarship it is still worth taking,” Kennell said.