DOTHAN, Ala. (WDHN)— The National Merit Scholarship program allows students nationwide to compete for $30 million dollars worth of scholarship money.

Nationwide 16,000 students are chosen as semifinalists all over the country based on a standardized test they take during a students junior year of high school.

This list will be dwindled down in the coming months, but there is one student from Dothan High School who was given this honor recently, Michelle McCleod.

“It feels really good,” National Merit Semifinalist Michelle McCleod said. “I put a lot of work and a lot of time in to this last year and I’m really glad that it payed off and I got the result I really wanted.”

Michelle now will be taking on the next step of the National Merit Scholarship Program by completing an application to try and become a national merit Scholar Finalist.

McCleod also tells other students to advantage of these opportunities because you never know what might happen.

“As long as you put the work in, put the time in, and put the effort in, you can get what you need and what you want.” said McCleod.