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The Oakridge School seniors, Sana Kohli and Grant Miranda, have been named National Merit Scholarship finalists for 2022. This distinction places both students in an elite group of about 15,000 students – less than one percent of the nation’s graduating seniors. 

Both students entered Oakridge as toddlers. Head of Upper School, Mr. Jim Andersen, called Grant and Sana exemplary scholars and said their being selected as National Merit Scholarship finalists is just the beginning of more successes to come. “These are just two really incredible young people,” he said. “In addition to taking their studies seriously, they love to help others and move about with great humility. I am certain we will hear many great things from them in the future.” 

Over the years, both students have grown as leaders in the classroom, fully participated in many areas of campus life, and served extensively in the community. “Sana is the 2021-2022 student body president, co-founder of the robotics team, and is an important advocate for empowering girls and young women to lead,” said Kellen Lewis, college advising director. “Grant played a major role in founding the Oakridge chapter of Mu Alpha Theta, the national mathematics honor society, and can often be found providing free tutoring for other students in the library before school. These are students who clearly believe in serving, are very thoughtful of others, and respected by faculty and students alike.”   

Throughout his nearly three decades-long career at Oakridge, Head of School, Mr. Jon Kellam, said he has been impressed by countless students at Oakridge who have each helped to make the school the special place it is today. He beamed with pride as he congratulated Sana and Grant for how they have soared. “Sana and Grant entered Oakridge as three-year-olds in the preschool program. It has been a joy to watch them mature and become leaders. Keep an eye on these two outstanding Owls in college and beyond. They are difference-makers.”

With an interest in artificial intelligence, Sana said she plans to study computer science. “I would ideally like to work in medical software/technology, especially wearable technology.” Eventually her goal is to start her own company and create a platform to use data analytics and machine learning to better serve and connect medical professionals. Grant plans to double major in computer science and economics. He hopes to begin a career in either software engineering or product management at a tech company. “In the long term, I hope to create my own business focused on technology and perhaps at the intersection of technology and healthcare.” Both students plan to wait until spring to announce their college decision. 

The National Merit Scholarship Program began in 1955 and is an academic competition for recognition and scholarships. Approximately 1.5 million high school students enter the program each year. All National Merit Scholarship finalists are considered for one of the 2,500 single-payment $2,500 National Merit scholarships that are offered on a state representational basis. Each Merit Scholarship award must be used for full-time attendance at an accredited U.S. college or university.

As finalists, Sana and Grant move on in the competition to become a National Merit Scholar. From April through July 2022, National Merit Scholarship winners will be announced. Learn more about the scholarship competition at the National Merit Scholarship Corporation website.

Established in 1979, The Oakridge School is an independent, co-educational, college preparatory, day school for students age 3 through grade 12. The school draws a diverse student body from 22 area cities and 8 countries to a dynamic learning environment on a 100-acre campus in Arlington. The Oakridge School mission is to inspire students to seek their full potential in academics, the arts, and athletics in a challenging and nurturing environment that cultivates social responsibility, mutual respect, and personal integrity. To learn more about The Oakridge School, visit www.theoakridgeschool.org.