Ursuline News

Meet Our 2023 National Merit Semifinalists

Congratulations to our National Merit Semifinalists! We can't wait to see what they accomplish next.

Approximately 16,000 students across the U.S. were named National Merit Semifinalists this year. These seniors have an opportunity to continue in the competition for some 7,250 National Merit Scholarships offered next spring.

Meet our National Merit Semifinalists:

Claire Cardenas
Clubs/Interests
: Student Council, President of the Best Buddies Club, Learn, Empower, Accept, Discover (LEAD) Club

"I intend to major in Neuroscience for undergrad, then hopefully attend medical school to become a doctor," she said. "I would love to be a psychiatrist and do research on the overlap between neuroscience and mental health."

Biya Mary Cham
Club/Interests
: Secretary of National Honors Society, Treasurer of the Biomedical Club, Student Alumnae Association, Ambassadors, North Texas Food Bank's Young Advocates Council

"I hope to major in Computer Science or Public Health and eventually go to medical school," she said. "I aspire to be a Pediatrician while possibly also doing Clinical Informatics."

Kylie Hanners
Clubs/Interests
: Co-VP of the UA Computer Science Club, Biology, Environmental Science Club

"I hope to major in either Computer Science or Marine Biology," she said. "I don't know what my career plans are at the moment, but I know I want to be involved in a STEM field!"

Samantha Liao
Clubs/Interests
: Research project sponsored by the Dallas Environmental Education Initiative, Communications Lead for the DFW chapter of Citizens' Climate Lobby, UA Environmental Science Club

"I hope to major in Chemical Engineering/Material Science, and later research renewable energy battery storage or carbon capture technology," she said.

Theresa Tran
Clubs/Interests
: President of Tri-M Music Honors Society, Co-President of French Club, Student Alumnae Association Vice President, Ambassador, Pianist in the Orchestra

"I want to study Health Science because it focuses on STEM – subjects that I love – while incorporating more humanity-based studies such as ethics," she said. "The two have different focuses, but together, they create an education that fosters both analytical and critical reasoning."