Marist High School senior Samantha Reidy earned a top composite score of 36 on a recent ACT exam. Reidy is the fifth Marist student to score a 36 in the past thirteen years, and the second female student at Marist to do so. On average, less than one-tenth of one percent of students who take the ACT earns the top score. Among test takers in the high school graduating class of 2016, only 2,235 of nearly 2.1 million students earned a composite score of 36.
Reidy, a graduate of Independence Junior High, said she took the exam six or seven times with the goal of attaining a 36. While Reidy has carried a heavy Advanced Placement course load, she has balanced it with participation in National Honor Society, Spanish National Honor Society, basketball, volleyball, and the math team, which is the number one Catholic school team in the state and fifth overall.
She is considering University of California at Berkeley, University of Texas at Austin, Colorado School of Mines, and California Institute of Technology (Caltech). She hopes to pursue a degree in chemical or biomedical engineering.
The ACT consists of tests in English, mathematics, reading and science. Each test is scored on a scale of 1 to 36, and a student's composite score is the average of the four test scores. Some students also take ACT’s optional writing test, but the score for that test is reported separately and is not included within the ACT composite score. ACT test scores are accepted by all major U.S. colleges. Exceptional scores of 36 provide colleges with evidence of student readiness for the academic rigors that lie ahead.
Marist High School offers test preparation classes on campus for all standardized tests, along with a strong curriculum that readies students for exam content. Other recent graduates who scored 36 include Becca Valek ’17, Jason Phelan ’16, Andrew Lynch ’10, and Peter O’Malley ’04.
Celebrating more than 50 years of excellence, Marist High School in Chicago, is a Catholic, coed high school, making Jesus Christ known and loved in the Marist Brothers' tradition, while preparing students for higher education and life.