AHS senior named National Merit Scholar

‘Represented our school and community so well’

News Photo by Julie Goldberg Alpena High School senior Sam Tuscher receives a certificate from Principal Thomas Berriman on Friday for being named a National Merit Scholarship winner.

ALPENA — One Alpena High School senior was recently named a National Merit Scholarship winner for his hard work throughout high school.

Sam Tuscher received a $2,500 scholarship for finishing high school with a grade-point average of 4.092. He said the GPA is as of the end of the first semester of this school year, since grades for the second semester are not yet finalized.

Tuscher was honored in front of the entire school during an assembly on Friday, when Principal Thomas Berriman presented him with a certificate. Tuscher said it was nerve-racking to be recognized in front of his classmates, since there were so many people watching.

Berriman said Tuscher is active in the building and was recognized for four years of hard work. Tuscher represents everything good about what the high school tries to teach students, Berriman said.

“Whenever you see a kid get the recognition they deserve for how hard they work, it’s a special for the kid,” Berriman said.

Tuscher, who is number-one in Alpena’s Class of 2019, is attending the University of Oklahoma in the fall to study biochemistry. He selected Oklahoma because of the scholarship, which helps pay for some expenses.

“It’s a good school,” Tuscher said. “I like biology and chemistry a lot, so I figured I would combine them and study that.”

Leaving Alpena for Oklahoma is exciting to Tuscher. He said he loves new opportunities, so it will be fun to travel to Oklahoma for school. At the same time, he will miss Alpena and the solid group of friends here that he can always rely on.

Tuscher said being number-one in the graduating class makes him feel like a spotlight is being put on him, but Berriman said he’s earned it.

“He’s represented our school and community so well,” Berriman said. “We wish Sam the best. He’s a well-rounded individual and anything he does, he represents not only his family, but his community and school really well and we’re proud of him.”

Tuscher was a part of cross country, track, Knowledge Bowl, and ski club while at Alpena High.

“We’re excited to see where his future takes him and we wish him the best of luck,” Berriman said.

Alpena senior Clayton Donajkowski was named a finalist for the scholarship.

Three current Alpena High juniors have qualified to be eligible for a National Merit Scholarship next school year, Berriman said.

Julie Goldberg can be reached at 989-358-5688 or jgoldberg@thealpenanews.com. Follow her on Twitter @jkgoldberg12.