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Friends & Neighbors - The perfect score

Getting a good score on the SAT college entry exams is the goal of pretty much every high school student in this country who has aspirations toward higher education.

But to get a perfect score? That's the kind of thing most of us would consider an unattainable dream.

It's a dream that became a reality this summer for Detroit Lakes native Grant Remmen. Remmen, the son of Larry and Kellie Remmen of Detroit Lakes, earned a rare score of 2400 on his SATs in June.

"It's really very exciting," said the college-bound senior on Thursday.

It's an extremely rare accomplishment -- according to The College Board, which administers the exam, a mere 269 of more than 1.5 million students who took the SAT in 2007 have achieved that perfect score. (The test was expanded from two to three sections in 2005, raising the highest potential score from 1600 to 2400.)

But what truly makes Remmen excited about his feat is the opportunity it will bring.

"Hopefully it will mean really good scholarship opportunities for me," he said.

That may be an understatement. In addition to the 2400 SAT score, Remmen also did "really well" on his ACT test, with a near-perfect 35 of 36. He also recently learned that he is a semifinalist in the 2008 National Merit Scholarship competition.

"I just found out this week (about being a semifinalist)," Remmen said. "It's great news, to be in the running for that... but I won't find out my standing with National Merit until next spring."

In the meantime, Remmen will be busy adding to his college entrance resumé, which also includes accomplishments such as being the Minnesota State Spelling Bee Champion for three years running, and competing in the National Spelling Bee; and this past year, competing in the American Legion National High School Oratorical Competition, also as the Minnesota state champion. Not surprisingly, he is ranked No. 1 in his class academically.

But that's not all. Remmen is also a participant in the DLHS symphonic and jazz bands, choir and Laker Singers.

He will play the featured role of Lumiere in the high school fall musical, "Disney's Beauty & the Beast," in November, and is also a regular participant in the Lakes Area Community Band -- though his commitment to the musical has curtailed his participation in that group, for now.

"I'm also in the National Honor Society, and active in the Interact (sponsored by Rotary) and Key Club (sponsored by Kiwanis) youth service organizations," he said.

"I play piano too. Music is a very big part of my life. I'm not planning on going into music (professionally), but it's something I can continue to pursue that will bring me enjoyment throughout my life."

So if not music, then what career path is Remmen planning to pursue in college?

"I want to double major in astrophysics and mathematics," he said. "In astrophysics there are several options for conducting scientific research.

"I'm still looking at several schools, both in and out of state. I've been touring a lot of colleges this summer, and will be continuing to do so as I narrow down my field of search."

Vicki Gerdes

Staff writer at Detroit Lakes Newspapers for the past 16 years, currently editor of the entertainment and community pages as well as covering city council and the Lake Park-Audubon School Board. Living in DL with my cat, Smokey.

(218) 844-1454