Miami Trace High School Principal Rob Enochs recently announced that Blake Pittser has been named a “Commended Student” in the 2017 National Merit Scholarship Program.
According to a press release from the school, about 34,000 Commended Students in the U.S. are being recognized for exceptional academic promise. Although they will not continue in the 2017 competition for National Merit Scholarship awards, Commended Students placed among the top 5 percent of more than 1.6 million students who entered the 2017 competition by taking the 2015 Preliminary SAT/National Merit Scholarship Qualifying Test (PSAT/NMSQT).
The PSAT/NMSQT, among other tests cosponsored by the College Board and National Merit Scholarship Corporation (NMSC), measure a student’s college and career readiness from grades eight through 12. Together, these assessments provide a comprehensive solution that systematically and progressively measures the knowledge, skills, and understandings that are essential for success in college and career. According to their website, the tests reflect the kinds of meaningful, engaging, and challenging work that students find in the best middle and high school courses taught today.
“I felt pretty good going into the test because it is more of a logic based and general course studies, so I felt like I was pretty prepared with what I had done,” Pittser, a senior at Miami Trace, said. “Actually my parents, especially my mom, helped to print off practice SATs and I took one or two of those in preparation. Seeing what the questions were like and knowing what I was going to have to know going into it helped me a lot.”
Pittser is very involved at Miami Trace as he is not only an exceptional student, he also plays on some of the school’s sports teams, including football, soccer, cross country, basketball and others. He also is involved in club soccer, where he plays out of the fall season, with Ohio Galaxies outside of Xenia.
“We are very proud of his accomplishment, but not surprised by it,” Enochs said. “You see excellence out of Blake no matter what he does. Whether it is in the classroom, being involved in activities in the building, or his athletic activities he is involved with, he always carries himself in a way that represents us very proudly. We are proud of him. He is the total package and does everything at a very high level.”
Pittser said to the younger students that anyone can perform well on these tests and that some of the most important steps in preparation may sound silly because they are repeated so often.
“Honestly some of the biggest things are making sure you get enough rest the day before and doing the little things such as online prep, checking out those questions,” Pittser said. “You can check out what those questions are going to be like just to go in prepared ahead of time. And then studying in your general courses because it is logic and fact-based questions, so I think if you stay focused in school and you get rested the day before with a good breakfast and things like that you should be fine.”
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 313-0351 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy