Tellico Plains High School senior
Joseph "Joe" Bivens is leaving his mark. Bivens is the sole
Monroe County student to be named a 2014 National Merit Semifinalist
by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation.
Principal Russell Harris believes
Bivens is the first from the school to achieve the academic honor.
"Everyone at Tellico Plains High is
very proud of Joe for his accomplishment," said Principal Harris.
The National Merit Scholarship
Corporation selected about 16,000 semifinalists nationally in
the 59th annual National Merit Scholarship Program. These
academically talented high school seniors will continue in the
competition for some 8,000 National Merit Scholarships worth about $35 million that will be offered next spring.
Approximately 1.5 million upcoming
high school seniors in more than 22,000 high schools entered the 2014
National Merit Scholarship Program by taking the 2012 Preliminary
SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test. The nationwide pool
of semifinalists, representing less than one percent of U.S. High
school seniors, includes the highest-scoring entrants in each state.
"I am very proud of Joe Bivens, for
being a semifinalist in the 2014 National Merit Scholarship
Program," said Director of Schools Mike Lowry. "We are very proud
of Joe's accomplishments. Because of Joe's high goals for himself
and his commitment to do his very best each day, he is an excellent
candidate for this award."
Bivens, the son of Darrell and Lisa
Bivens of Tellico Plains, is on tract to be valedictorian of his
graduating class. He is also senior class treasurer, a charter member
of the school’s Scholars Bowl team, a member of the Student
Government Association and a student School Board representative
"Joe is a truly dedicated and
hard-working student that is deserving of being named a
semifinalist," said Principal Harris. "He has represented Tellico
Plains High School with great integrity and has displayed
exemplary good character during his tenure as a Bear. It's
hard for me to imagine a more deserving young man for this
To be considered for a Merit
Scholarship award, semifinalists must fulfill several
requirements to advance to the finalist level of the
competition. The semifinalist and their high school must now submit a
detailed scholarship application with information about the
semifinalist's academic record, participation in school and
community activities, demonstrated leadership abilities,
employment, and honors and awards received.
Finalists will be announced in
February. National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced
beginning in April.
Bivens plans to attend Vanderbilt in
the fall of 2014.