SJA News

SJA Students Named National Merit Semifinalists, Commended Student

SJA seniors Matthew Hunton, Benjamin Hammer, and Asher Solnit were named Commended Student and Semifinalists in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Competition.

Two St. Johnsbury Academy Seniors have been selected as Semifinalists in the 2018 National Merit Scholarship Competition. Seniors Benjamin Hammer of Monroe, New Hampshire, and Asher Solnit of Bath, New Hampshire, are among approximately 16,000 qualifying students out of about 1.6 million juniors who took the 2016 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT) nationwide. Approximately 90% of the 16,000 Semifinalists go on to become Finalists, of which 50% win a National Merit Scholarship.

Additionally, senior Matthew Hunton was named a Commended Student in the 2018 National Merit Program. This designation represents about 34,000 of the 1.6 million juniors who took the test.

Academy Headmaster Tom Lovett said, "Ben, Asher, and Matthew are excellent examples of what it means to be a scholar. All three value knowledge and understanding more than grades and work hard to maximize their academic potential. As a result, although it is quite an honor for them to be selected for these honors, I am more impressed by the fact that these three young men have demonstrated the intellectual character and enthusiasm for learning that mark the very best scholars. They and their families should be very proud."

Additional information about the National Merit Scholarship Program is available by visiting