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Gov. Ricketts, Education Department Recognize 17 High School Students for Top ACT and SAT Scores

Media Contacts:

Eric Maher, Governor’s Office, 402-471-1974

David Jespersen, Education Department, 402-471-4537



LINCOLN – Today, Governor Pete Ricketts and the Nebraska Department of Education recognized 17 Nebraska high school students for their academic achievement in earning top scores of 36 on the ACT or a 1600 on the SAT college admissions exam.  Recognition ceremonies were held at the Nebraska State Capitol in Lincoln.


“Earning a top score on the ACT or SAT exam is a significant accomplishment that only comes through discipline, study, and hard work,” said Governor Ricketts.  “Students from Chadron to Omaha that achieved the highest level of academic excellence on these college entrance exams should be very proud.”


Addressing the students directly, Governor Ricketts said, “Wherever your college plans may take you, I hope you will continue to make Nebraska your home as you start your careers and raise a family.”


The Governor was joined by Nebraska’s Chief Academic Officer Cory Epler, ACT’s Senior VP of Client Relations Paul Weeks, and ACT’s Nebraska State Lead Rob Dennis to honor Nebraska’s graduating seniors earning the highest possible composite scores on the exams.  Students were presented with certificates recognizing their achievement in academic excellence.


“Congratulations to the Nebraska students who achieved the top score on their ACT or SAT this year,” said Education Commissioner Matt Blomstedt.  “Their test scores represent an outstanding level of achievement and academic excellence.  Their parents and teachers are proud of their work, and their commitment to academic excellence is an inspiration to other students.”


Graduating top scoring ACT students include:


  •       Keenan Allen, Lincoln East High School, Lincoln
  •       Anthony Benes, Elkhorn High School, Omaha
  •       Matthew Gromowksy, Skutt Catholic High School, Omaha
  •       Austin Gronewold, Lincoln Northeast High School, Lincoln
  •       Walt Mays, Chadron High School, Chadron
  •       Connor McFayden, Platteview High School, Springfield
  •       Joshua Militti, Westside High School, Omaha
  •       Preston Noll, Westside High School, Omaha
  •       Marta Pulfer, Wayne Jr. Sr. High School, Wayne
  •       Benjamin Rhodes, Gretna High School, Gretna
  •       Amanda Rowley, Pius X High School, Lincoln
  •       Natalie Schieuer, Piux X High School, Lincoln
  •       Samantha Seaman, Bellevue East High School, Bellevue
  •       Nathan Stieren, Elkhorn South High School, Omaha
  •       Daniel Thibodeau, Skutt Catholic High School, Omaha
  •       Abram Turner, Lincoln Southeast High School, Lincoln


One student, Justin Xiong of Millard North High School in Omaha, achieved a perfect score on the SAT.

Gov. Ricketts, Education Department Recognize 17 High School Students for Top ACT and SAT Scores