Because they're ignorant and insensitive
?? Seriously, they might have been referring to the fact that:
1. There is no direct scholarship given connected to NHRP as there is with NM and NA. However, there are scholarships that colleges give to NHRP applicants.
2. The cut offs are below NM commended, so some might consider it not an honor in comparison. I would disagree and think that it gets you on the radar of many schools and is valuable recognition to have on your application.
It it going to be viewed as a huge honor? It's likely to be more of one if you attend an underserved HS, are low SES, first gen to college, etc.; and less of one if your parents are college educated, upper SES, etc.