Duluth student gets perfect score in five ACT/SAT tests

You can be forgiven if your first reaction to Gautum Mereddy’s story in the Duluth News Tribune is, “his parents must have really pushed the kid.” Mereddy, a student at Duluth East, received perfect scores on all five of the ACT and SAT tests he took.

It’s a remarkable story — he’s already had three academic articles in chemistry published and a fourth is underway — but this is the portion about his parents that stands out:

Even with their emphasis on the fields of science, Mereddy, an only child, said they’ve been largely hands off on his education. And through that freedom, he took his own initiative in school and volunteering.

What they gave him was inspiration. His parents are both professors at the University of Minnesota Duluth.

Mom teaches chemistry; dad teaches pharmacy.

But his own initiative and volunteering with St. Luke’s and Essentia Health-St. Mary’s Medical Center, the Chris Jensen Health and Rehabilitation Center and the Andiamo Center appears to have played a big part.

“I’ve been doing a lot of health care-related volunteering. The combination of (the) science behind it and the social interactions with the doctors and patients — I just think it’s rather interesting,” he tells the paper.

“There’s more to a student than just some test numbers and whatnot,” he said. “If you’re going to do anything, you should try to do it to the best of your abilities.”

  • Al

    Best of luck, kid. You’re gonna need it.

  • jon

    If you ace the test the first time, why take it a second time…
    do you think you are going to do better than perfect?

    Honestly acing it once suggests you might be pretty smart, but taking it 4 more times after getting a perfect score… let’s just say that doesn’t seem all that smart.

    • Al

      I took the ACT three times. Once in middle school to qualify for some sort of gifted-talented thing. Once in high school with the rest of my classmates. Again in high school after I scored lower on the previous test than I had in eighth grade. Sad trombone.

      • Kassie

        Which proves tests are BS. I took the SAT and the ACT a weekend apart from each other. I got a super low SAT score, like in the bottom 15% in the country. My ACT score was in the top 5% in the country. It is just all garbage.

        • Jack

          Does the PSAT even exist anymore? I remember taking it junior year of HS in the basement of a church with someone practicing the organ upstairs.

          Have no idea what my score was and it didn’t matter since I was already taking classes at the local university and it was just a formality at that point.

          Kudos to the student in the story! Love his volunteering.

          • Rob Bruening

            It does. It actually matters, too. It’s the test used to qualify for National Merit scholarships, which can turn into serious (full ride) money, depending on where you go

    • Debby

      It doesn’t say he repeated the same test. There are many separate SAT tests.

  • Beverly

    The name of the sourced paper is the Duluth News Tribune.