Return to Headlines

3 El Paso ISD students are region’s only National Merit Scholarship semifinalists

(EL PASO INDEPENDENT SCHOOL DISTRICT — Sept. 15, 2023) — A trio of El Paso ISD high school seniors are the only students from the Paso del Norte region among the list of 2024 National Merit Scholarship Program semifinalists announced by the National Merit Scholarship Corporation this week.  

Jennifer Bromley of Silva Health Magnet High School; Angelina Bianca Marranzini of Franklin High School; and Judson McGinnes of Coronado High School were among the more than 16,000 semifinalists who will have an opportunity to pursue National Merit Scholarships to be offered next spring worth nearly $28 million.  

The El Paso ISD students were considered for placement in the program after taking the 2022 preliminary SAT test during their junior year.  

To become a finalist, students must submit a detailed scholarship application detailing their academic record, participation in school and community activities, leadership activities, employment and list any honors or awards received. About 95% of semifinalists move on to become a finalist. These students will be announced in February.  

Bromley credits her father along with several teachers for helping her achieve academic success. Bromley, who plans to apply to Harvard University, Johns Hopkins University and Rice University, is intent on entering the biomedical field. She hopes her achievements can inspire future generations of Silver Foxes to reach their lofty goals.   

“I am honestly a bit bewildered by this announcement and incredibly honored to be recognized by such a prestigious organization,” Bromley said. “I hope this achievement may inspire my underclassmen to strive for this recognition and substantiate their potential to acquire it. I personally perceive it as the foundational award upon which my biomedical aspirations may be extrapolated.”  

Marranzini’s first choice to attend college is Texas Tech University, though she still intends to apply to Baylor University, Texas A&M University, the University of Texas at San Antonio, the University of Texas at Dallas, and the University of Texas at El Paso. Along with a horde of school leaders and teachers, Marranzini also credits her parents — who immigrated to the United States from Argentina and the Dominican Republic — with helping her reach this juncture.    

“I am very honored to be a semifinalist,” Marranzini said. “When they informed me, I was overcome with joy and grateful that the countless hours of studying paid off. (My parents have) inspiring to me and shown me that, with dedication and a positive outlook on life, it is possible to accomplish your dreams.”  

McGinnes expressed gratitude for the guidance and support he has received from all the educators he has encountered at Western Hills Elementary, Morehead Middle School and Coronado. He said his parents have instilled the value of education within him since a very young age, and he is pleased that he has been able to parlay that support into this nationwide honor.   

“I think being named a National Merit Scholar is a wonderful honor that I’m very proud to be awarded,” said McGinnes, who plans to apply to the University of Chicago, Rice University, Princeton University, Columbia University and other schools. “I believe it represents a unique opportunity for students from all backgrounds to earn money for their future education. Hopefully, I can continue on to become a National Merit finalist.”   

The trio will compete for 2,500 National Merit Scholarships worth $2,500, 840 corporate-sponsored scholarships and 3,800 college-sponsored scholarships from 160 higher education institutions.