Since 2002, the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) has been supporting young academics on their journey to college and beyond as they prepare to become the leaders of tomorrow. Co-founded by the grand-nephew of Alfred Nobel, NSHSS is inspired by the mission of the Nobel Prize to support academic achievement and world betterment. NSHSS pursues this mission by connecting members with scholarships, college fairs, internships, career and leadership opportunities, partner discounts, and more.


Young scholars
In our member community since 2002.


NSHSS members around the globe


Recognizing young scholars

academic excellence

NSHSS recognizes high school scholars for their academic achievements as well as service to their local communities. A one-time $90 lifetime membership fee provides young scholars with an array of resources that encourage smooth transitions from high school to college and beyond.

“For more than 120 years, my family name has been recognized as a hallmark of peace and excellence…”

NSHSS was established in 2002 by Claes Nobel and James Lewis to continue the Nobel family legacy of recognizing and rewarding excellence.


Meet the NSHSS leadership team

James Lewis

President of NSHSS

James W. Lewis is President of the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS), which he established in 2002 along with friend and co-founder, Claes Nobel, a member of the family that established the Nobel Prizes.


Claes Nobel

Co-founder of NSHSS

Claes Nobel (1930-2021) founded the National Society of High School Scholars (NSHSS) in 2002. Originally from Sweden and a member of the family that established the Nobel Prizes, he held dual citizenship from Sweden and the US. Mr. Nobel was a passionate proponent of humanitarian and environmental causes.

Gregory J. Goff

Chairman of NSHSS Advisory Board

Currently, Mr. Goff is the Founder and President of G&S Energy, a newly formed company focused on creating businesses in the changing energy sector; Founder and President of GJG Development, a real estate development company and Executive Director of the GGoff Foundation. Mr. Goff is the chairman of the advisory board of the National Society for High School Scholars and also the Founder of the Goff Strategic Leadership Center at the University of Utah, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Business Administration.

NSHSS Advisory Board 

The NSHSS Advisory Board was established in 2002 by Co-founder Claes Nobel who served as the Chair until his passing in April 2021.

  • Advisory Board Chair Greg Goff, member ExxonMobil Board of Directors
  • Ed Harris, Actor, Producer, Director
  • James J. Heckman, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Economics 2000
  • Herbert Kroemer, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Physics 2000
  • Anthony Leggett, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Physics 2003
  • Rudolph A. Marcus, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Chemistry 1992
  • Kiran Mazumar-Shaw, Chairman & Managing Director, Biocon Limited
  • Stanley Prusiner, M.D., Nobel Laureate, Medicine 1997
  • Inge Thulin, Former CEO, President & Chairman, 3M
  • Sir John E. Walker, Ph.D., Nobel Laureate, Chemistry 1997
  • Di Yerbury, Ph.D., Vice-Chancellor Emeritus, Macquarie University (Sydney, Australia)
  • Dr. Allan Zeman GBM, GBS, JP, Chairman of Lan Kwai Fong Group

The seven rights

NSHSS Co-founder Claes Nobel believed that youth are 100% of our future. Mr. Nobel encouraged all people to prescribe to “The Seven Rights,” a powerful remedy for Universal Peace, Environmental Sustainability, and Personal Happiness.

Your mind is a dynamic organ. 
Everything in the universe and in 
the world – yes, even you – 
originated in thought.

Words are incredibly powerful. 
Once a word leaves your mouth,
not even the strength of 10,000
elephants can pull it back again.

Let Dignity, Honor, and Truth be
the noble hallmarks of your 

Smile and laugh. Be kind, positive,
and helpful to all. Become a good 

Step lightly on the Earth-leave no

Begin local transformation before 
global change. Begin in your own 
community, starting with your 
immediate surroundings.

No procrastination! No excuses! 
Become a very busy, active 
person for World Betterment and 
World Change.


NSHSS, or the National Society of High School Scholars, is a distinguished academic honor society, committed to recognizing and serving the highest-achieving student scholars in more than 26,000 high schools across 170 countries. Criteria for membership is based on academic performance and is the highest among national high school honors programs.

Since our founding in 2002, NSHSS has fostered a diverse and inclusive organization of exceptional young leaders of more than 2 million members spanning high school to college to career. Our mission is to honor academic achievement and provide unique resources and scholarships that enrich educational journeys, fuel career interests, and drive community impact.

Membership with NSHSS is an individual membership and is not chartered through schools. Being an individual membership is what allows NSHSS to offer a continuity of benefits that extend after high school graduation, into college, and beyond. Because it is based on the individual, not the school, it also means that membership remains with the student even if they transfer schools. It also means that any student who qualifies can be a member of NSHSS regardless of their location. Membership is for a lifetime and is not renewed annually.

Claes Nobel, a member of the family that established the Nobel Prizes, helped found NSHSS in 2002 to continue his family's legacy of recognizing and rewarding contributions to world betterment. He believed the world leaders of tomorrow emerge from today's youth and that NSHSS is a platform for young leaders to receive the support needed to change their world. For the years leading up to his death in 2021, Mr. Nobel was the chair of the advisory board and personally involved in many of the Society's initiatives. He attended member events and provided input on the strategic direction of the organization.

NSHSS has a one-time membership fee of USD $90 for members in the United States and Canada. There are no annual dues or renewals. This is a lifetime membership. Additionally, students are eligible to apply for a waiver of the fee if they can demonstrate financial need. Like most membership organizations, a fee is charged to help cover the organizational costs of fulfilling our mission. Our one-time, lifetime fee covers virtually all expenses associated with membership in NSHSS, including access to benefits and opportunities available only to members of NSHSS, such as:

  • Unique scholarship opportunities and academic competitions
  • Publications and member-only web content
  • Member communications including regular emails and e-newsletters
  • Service and leadership opportunities
  • Unique outreach from top domestic and international universities
  • Unique offerings through our partnerships
  • Personalized membership certificate
  • Personalized press release for distribution to local media
  • Peer networking

Start researching scholarships in advance. NSHSS scholarship opportunities are listed year-round on our Scholarships page. Select the scholarship that interests you to view the essay prompt and begin drafting your essay. A resume, transcript, educator recommendation, and a headshot are also typically required. You do not need to submit multiple transcripts, photos, and resumes. Once these are submitted, they may be used for any NSHSS scholarships you apply for. Once you submit the application online, you will be unable to edit your answers.