Elizabeth High School senior Peter Johnson, 17, was named a commended student in the 2021 National Merit Scholarship Program. He received a letter of commendation from Principal Bret McClendon for placing in the top 50,000 scorers out of more than 1.5 million students who took the PSAT in October 2019.
“I got my scores last fall after I took the test, but I didn’t know how well I’d done until Mr. McClendon told me,” said Johnson. “I was pretty excited when he gave me the certificate.”
Johnson is a member of the swim team at the high school, and competes in a club team year round. He maintains a 4.0 grade point average, and said his favorite subjects are calculus and chemistry. He hopes to pursue an education in mechanical engineering, and has received scholarships from the College Board National Rural and Small Town Recognition Program, and was the recipient of the University of Colorado Boulder Outstanding Colorado High School Student Award.
“I’d have to say that I’ve had some really good teachers,” said Johnson.
Johnson was born in Virginia, and due to his father’s job spent his early years living in Israel, Italy and Ireland. The family moved to Elizabeth when Johnson began junior high. Johnson’s dream job would be to work for Apple, or anything that involves building robots.
“In five years I hope to be getting started on my master’s,” said Johnson. “I’m a big Apple fan, and would love to work for them. I hope to be part of new innovation that involves robots.”
Although Johnson will not advance in the 2021 competition, The National Merit Scholarship Corporation commends students who have demonstrated potential for academic success.
“These students represent a valuable national resource; recognizing their accomplishments, as well as the key role their schools play in their academic development, is vital to the advancement of educational excellence in our nation. We hope that this recognition will help broaden their educational opportunities and encourage them as they continue their pursuit of academic success,” reads a press release issued by the NMSC.
McClendon said Elizabeth High has a history of students who receive commendations or advance in the National Merit Scholarship competition each year.
“We’ve had students be recognized for the past several years,” said McClendon. “Peter is a great kid. He works hard, he’s involved in the school. You really couldn’t ask for a better student at Elizabeth High School. Peter is keeping up the tradition for us.”