October 1, 2021
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
PCS PROUD TO ANNOUNCE TWO NATIONAL MERIT SEMIFINALISTS
IN CLASS OF 2022
HATTIESBURG, MS— Each year the National Merit Scholarship Corporation identifies students across the United States who have scored at a very high level on the Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship qualifying test (PSAT/NMSQT) as semifinalists. The nationwide pool of semifinalists, representing less than one percent (1%) of United States high school seniors, includes the highest scoring entrants in each state. This year, PCS is pleased to announce that two students in the PCS Class of 2022 have been named National Merit Semifinalists. The additions of Mr. Sam Powell and Mr. Sterling Robbins make for a total of 57 students from PCS who have been named National Merit Scholars since the year of 2000. We are proud to be the leading MAIS school with these honors. Earning the distinction of National Merit Semifinalist is one of the highest honors a high school student can obtain. These two students will be striving to advance as National Merit Finalists, which will be named in the spring.
Our College Counselor, Mr. Josh Bowen explains, “As a National Merit Semifinalist, these students have the opportunity to gain scholarship to four-year colleges and universities. These scholarships can range a great deal, but provide the opportunity in some cases to pave a pathway for a fully paid for bachelors degree. These two young men have worked extremely hard for this honor, and it comes at no surprise that their success is not limited to the classroom, but extends to the many ways they serve our school and community. Congratulations to a job well done!”
PCS Head of School Dr. Seth Parrish shares, “We are proud to announce our National Merit Semifinalists in the Class of 2022. These young men were born with the aptitude to succeed academically. But, more importantly, they have demonstrated the kind of work ethic that merits this honor. On top of their academic successes, both of these young men serve and lead here at PCS. I am hopeful and prayerful that they will continue to do great things in the years ahead. We are all thankful to get to celebrate their contributions to the PCS legacy.”
Name: Sam Powell
How long have you been a PCS student? 14 years
Where do you plan to continue your education next year? I am currently undecided.
What do you intend to major in or study? I intend on majoring in electrical or computer engineering.
What do you hope to become when you complete your education? I hope to become a computer engineer. I have always been interested in pursuing problem-solving fields with a lot of math so as long as I become some type of engineer, I will be pretty happy. I say a computer engineer because I have dug into that field a little already and have been really excited about what I have learned. Also, I feel like computer engineering is the perfect marriage of complex problem-solving and math application.
What teacher or teachers at PCS most impacted you and why? The teacher that most impacted me at PCS was Mrs. Brown. I first had her for MATHCOUNTS in the seventh grade. She really opened the door to problem-solving for me and inspired me to push myself. I would most definitely attribute my love of math to her. Her enthusiasm and excitement caught on, and soon I was getting just as excited as she was. I probably would not view math the way I do now if it had not been for her.
When you consider the Biblical worldview education you received during your time at PCS, what thing will you carry with you forever and why? I will always carry with me the way I learned to look at the world. In all of the subjects that I have been taught at PCS, one of the biggest things that connects them all is God’s handprints on them. The brilliancy of an author, the beauty of math and physics, and the order in chemistry, all show God’s design from creating people in his image to the order he created in nature. This idea frames learning and will frame any type of learning I will do from here on out. This is so important because it gives a purpose to learning. I am not learning to feel better about myself over someone else. I am not learning for approval from others. I am learning because I personally want to have a deeper understanding and awe of God’s creation. Certain parts of God’s nature are revealed through his creation so learning about his creation ultimately helps me understand the God I serve.
If you could thank your parents, siblings, friends, etc. for their role in this achievement, what would you say to them?
To all my former teachers, I definitely would not have achieved this without you giving up your time to teach and invest in my life and the lives of so many other students. You all have set such a Godly example for me and many others. Thank you particularly to those who were a little (or more than a little) hard on me; I needed it even if I did not like it. Thank you to all of my friends that have supported me throughout my time at PCS. Virginia, thanks for being such a bright spot in my life. Your optimism and humor has helped cheer me up on multiple occasions. Finally, thank you so much Mom and Dad! I know you have sacrificed so much for me and for my education. I know I would not have made it here without your constant prayers and energy. You have encouraged me so much to push myself and always improve. I cannot thank you enough for that. By expecting much from me, you made me expect that much or more from myself. Thank you for not putting too much pressure on me but for supporting me and allowing me to grow unhindered.
Name: Sterling Robbins
How long have you been a PCS student? 13 years
Where do you plan to continue your education next year? University of Alabama or Ole Miss
What do you intend to major in or study? Chemical engineering or Chemistry major, Pre-med track
What do you hope to become when you complete your education? Physician
What teacher or teachers at PCS most impacted you and why? Coach Smith and Mrs. Robertson impacted me the most because I learned to love chemistry taking their classes. They made very difficult concepts both easy and fun to learn.
When you consider the Biblical worldview education you received during your time at PCS, what thing will you carry with you forever and why? I will always remember the importance of standing strong in Christian values amidst a changing world. Having a strong Biblical worldview prepares someone for whatever worldly hardships come their way.
If you could thank your parents, siblings, friends, etc. for their role in this achievement, what would you say to them? I would first thank my parents, who never stopped motivating me to give my all in everything I do. They always bring out my best, and their guidance to help me through life is invaluable. I know I would not be anywhere close to where I am now without them. I would also thank my brother Saxon and my friends, who have always been there for me through the ups and downs of high school. They are the best I could ask for.