Elias Wilson aces the ACT


Daniel Friis

Elias Wilson believes that success comes through working hard, not necessarily taking the hardest classes or getting the best grades. His ACT score has opened up many opportunities for him.

Daniel Friis, Segment Producer

0.136 percent of students who take the American College Testing (ACT)  ace the test with a full score of 36, according to prepscholar.com, a site that gives statistics and percentages regarding the ACT and SAT.

Elias Wilson, a junior, is part of that 0.136 percent.

As most students do, Wilson went into the test nervous, knowing that he was about to take a big step into his academic future.

“I am the type of student that gets nervous before a small quiz in class, so the ACT was a real scare for me. I wanted to succeed my first time taking it so that I wouldn’t have to be nervous again and so I could just get it over with,” Wilson said.

However, unlike most students taking the ACT for their first time, Wilson had spent time studying and preparing.

“I had done courses on strategies for taking the ACT and how to approach it. I also took practice tests with questions that were similar to those on the test. I also pay attention to class and the teacher’s lectures like every student should. Not many people study hard for their first time, but I did just because I didn’t want to take it again.  Although I was anxious, I felt ready,” Wilson said.

Those who score a 33 or above on the ACT are in “Ivy League territory,” which is an area where Ivy League schools like Brown, Harvard, Yale, Princeton, and a few more begin to look into recruitment, according to prepscholar.com.

Wilson however, isn’t the typical Ivy League student.

“I have had my fair share of B’s in my life. I don’t have a 5.0 and I don’t take as many AP classes like most kids who go to universities do. I don’t think that success in high school has to come from taking all advanced classes and having straight A’s. My belief is that success, especially at the high school level, comes from hard work,” Wilson said.

This hard work can be seen by any of Wilson’s classmates who work with him. Theo Korolev, a junior who has English class with Wilson has seen this on full display.

“After sitting next to [Elias] for the year and being able to work with him, I can tell just how dedicated and how much he cares about everything he puts his mind to. Any group project or assignment we do, he’s always a key contributor, and I can always rely on him for help,” Korolev said.

Wilson isn’t yet sure on what he wants to do in college or where he wants to go to college, but his score on the ACT has opened up more opportunities for him.

“I may not be as smart or athletic as other kids going to big universities, but the ACT will hopefully lead me to a great school. Before I took the test, I would have never seen myself at an elite school, but now I see it as a possibility,” Wilson said.

Wilson believes that his story is one that can spread to others and inspire his peers.

Wilson said: “Anyone can do what I did. It doesn’t take a genius to be successful in high school and really in life in general. I know it sounds corny, but it just takes hard work and perseverance. If I could do it, anyone else can.”

If you are determined to do something and you put lots of effort into it in can be achieved. Take it from me, I am not a genius and I don’t have a photographic memory but I am a hard worker and it helped me be successful”

— Elias Wilson

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