Student Assistance


National Merit Scholarship Program


§ 381. Definitions.
§ 382. Benefits.
§ 383. Selection.

Editor’s note: The provisions of this subchapter were enacted by PL 16-37 which added a new subchapter VI of chapter 3 of this title. The purpose of this Act were stated in its section 1 as follows: Section 1. Purpose. The Federated States of Micronesia hereby establishes a National Merit Scholarship Program. The intent of the Program is to create an exceptional scholarship program recognizing and awarding the very top high school valedictorians in the Federated States of Micronesia.

§ 381. Definitions.

(1) “Valedictorian” means an individual graduating with the highest Grade Point Average (GPA) of all students in that individual’s high school graduating class;

(2) “National Merit Scholar” means an individual who:

(a) Is a citizen of the Federated States of Micronesia;

(b) Graduated or will graduate as valedictorian of a high school located within the Federated States of Micronesia;

(c) Plans to enroll in or attend any college or university within 12 months after high school graduation;

(d) Has taken and passed the COM-FSM Entrance Test (COMET); and

(e) Was selected in accordance to the procedures set forth in section 383 of this subchapter.

Source: PL 16-37 § 3.

§ 382. Benefits.

Individuals selected as National Merit Scholars shall receive the following benefits:

(1) Recognition as a National Merit Scholar under the Federated States of Micronesia National Merit Scholarship Program; and

(2) Payment of undergraduate tuition and fees directly to the attending college or university (but not payment towards living expenses, books or other incidental expenses) of up to $25,000 per year for up to four years as long as the Merit Scholar maintains a minimum 3.2 grade point average (GPA).

Source: PL 16-37 § 4.

§ 383. Selection.

(1) The Secretary of Education shall administer the National Merit Scholarship Program.

(2) Each year the Secretary shall invite applications from individuals meeting the requirements of section 381(2)(a) through (d) of this subchapter.

(3) No application shall be accepted from individuals who graduated more than 12 months before the date of the application.

(4) Applications shall include the individual’s COM-FSM Entrance Test (COMET) score.

(5) No later than 30 days from the closing date of receipt of applications, the Secretary shall announce the appointment of the National Merit Scholars.

(6) A maximum of four applicants, and no more than one applicant per State, shall be selected as a National Merit Scholar per year. An applicant is considered an applicant of the State where the applicant permanently resides, and not of the State where the applicant attended high school, if the applicant attended a high school outside of the applicant’s usual State of residency. The applicant from each State who meets all eligibility requirements and scores the highest COMET score shall be selected that State’s National Merit Scholar for the year.

(7) In the event that two applicants from one State meet all eligibility requirements and score the same COMET score, each applicant will be designated a National Merit Scholar and receive the benefits set forth in section 382 of this subchapter. In the event there is no eligible applicant from a State in a given year, no National Merit Scholar from that State shall be selected for the year.

(8) The Secretary is authorized to promulgate rules and regulations to implement, administer and otherwise further the intent of this Program.

Source: PL 16-37 § 5.

Cross-reference: FSM Const., art. IX, § 2(r), as amended, states as follows:

Section 2. The following powers are expressly delegated to Congress:

. . .

(r)    to promote education and health by setting minimum standards, coordinating state activities relating to foreign assistance, providing training and assistance to the states and providing support for post-secondary educational programs and projects.

. . .

FSM Const., art. XIII, § 1, as amended, states as follows:

Section 1. The national government of the Federated States of Micronesia recognizes the right of the people to education, health care, and legal services and shall take every step reasonable and necessary to provide these services.

The provisions of the Constitution are found in Part I of this code.