16 year old Rapid City “Whiz Kid” has perfect score on ACT exam

High school rising senior scores among the top 1% of ACT test takers in the country
Published: Jul. 11, 2023 at 11:54 AM MDT
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RAPID CITY, S.D. (KEVN) - A Stevens High School rising senior received a perfect score on his ACT exam and sits among the rare air of test takers. According to a national statistic, “a full 36 is the rarest score of all—just 0.313% of all test takers earned a perfect ACT score.” Samuel Barnes who scored a perfect “36″ on the ACT exam says he was happy when he saw the score and now is relieved that he doesn’t have to worry about it anymore. John Barnes, Samuel’s dad said he knew his son would do well on the test and all he did was provide parental support and direction.

After moving here as a freshman in 2020 from Alabama, Samuel says he’s been working hard on his academics from the time he was in junior high school, “if you prepare a lot earlier for it if you think about it a lot of the stuff you do in the ACT is going to be concepts from middle school or earlier that you apply later in life and you don’t lose those skills then and stick with them and develop them with other skills like high school math then you are on track for a very good score.”

Samuel’s ace on the exam puts him in the 99th percentile in the nation among ACT test takers. An essential part of college is entrance exams for students through the SAT or ACT exams. Many colleges use these exams to assess students along with their applications. It becomes quite competitive for students to be accepted by certain schools and scoring high on these entrance exams is critical. The ACT is no easy task and is quite difficult to achieve a perfect score in the four categories, Mathematics, English, Reading, Science, and an optional writing test. In the case of Samuel, a perfect ACT score may guarantee acceptance to the college of his choice.

By the way, Samuel says he wants to either attend Oklahoma State University or the University of Alabama and wants to study mechanical engineering like his mom. Samuel will be applying to college sometime this year. Asked if Samuel would be willing to lend his genius to any potential students for tutoring but it’s a no for Samuel as he is quite busy preparing for senior year and volunteering at the School of Mines testing electrospinning fibers as a process.