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30 LVJUSD Students Receive National Merit Scholarship Recognition

October 19, 2022 - Livermore, CA -  Six Livermore Valley Joint Unified School District (LVJUSD) high school seniors are among the more than 16,000 students nationwide named as National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists for the Class of 2023. Granada High School’s Ruman Das, Tanisha Deka, Yoav Feigenbaum, Shunsuke Sakagami, and Madeline Straus and Livermore High School’s Ian Zolynas represent Livermore’s top scholars as Semifinalists for this year. 

As juniors, these students scored in the top 1% of students in the state on their 2021 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT). “Our Granada High and Livermore High students should be extremely proud of their achievement, as California continues to be one of the most competitive states in the country for a student to qualify as a National Merit Semifinalist,” shared Jason Krolikowski, Director of Secondary Education for LVJUSD. 

In addition to the Semifinalists, 24 LVJUSD students were also recognized as National Merit Commended Students for scoring in the 96th percentile nationally on their eleventh grade PSAT/NMSQT. The 2022-23 Commended Students include:

Sahib Ajmani (GHS)
Nathan Blanton (LHS)
Hayden Borg (GHS)
Mandy Butler (GHS)
Emily Buttler (LHS)
Owen Fidler (GHS)
Henry Gleason (LHS)
Kelsey Hertz (GHS)
Geoffrey Huang (GHS)
Beckett Kohn (LHS)
Daniel Lai (GHS)
Molly Laperle (GHS)
Hyeonyeong Lee (GHS)
Richard Mallon (LHS)
Kalyan Manickaraja (LHS)
William Manley (GHS)
Doyle Miller (LHS)
Grace Moulton (LHS)
Omri Ratzkoff (GHS)
Takumi Romero (GHS)
Anna Tang (LHS)
Jonathan Van Essen (GHS)
Serena Woodward (GHS)

“Our National Merit Semifinalists and Commended Students represent a dedication to and intentional pursuit of academic excellence. Their determination and drive to perform at this academic level will serve them well in their pursuits beyond high school,” expressed Superintendent Chris Van Schaack.

Livermore’s Semifinalists will continue competing for Finalist status by completing a detailed application that highlights their academic record, participation in school and community activities, leadership abilities, employment, and other honors and awards. Finalists are eligible to receive National Merit, corporate-sponsored, and college-sponsored financial scholarships which are awarded in the spring. For more information on the National Merit Scholarship program, visit

Photos courtesy of Creative Imaging and LVJUSD:

Photo #1: Collage photo with all Semifinalists
2023 National Merit Scholarship Semifinalists