When her daughter Christian Blakely was in just the fourth grade, Angelica Blakely-LeBeauf got a call from the school principal to let her in on a little secret.
“She asked me if I was sitting down,” LeBeauf said. “She said Christian earned perfect scores in math and science on the LEAP and told me, ‘Okay, this is big. You’ve gotta keep on her and see where she wants to go.’”
Blakely hasn’t let her talents go to waste — she’s never been inclined to, in fact. The now high school sophomore and Ama resident has never seen her GPA dip below 4.25 and is currently standing at 4.75 — the additional points coming from her strong performance in honors courses. She’s earned a couple more perfect scores in the math and science categories on the LEAP, then posted a 1630 score out of a possible 1750 on the SAT as a seventh grader. Recently, she scored a 28 on the ACT — and aspires to hit a perfect mark on that before her high school days are over. She’s only made three Bs in her academic career.
Blakely recently got her acceptance letter to the Louisiana School for Math, Science and the Arts (LSMSA) in Natchitoches, which is on the campus of Northwestern State University and has been ranked the ninth best public high school in the nation by Niche. It’s a residential school where she will be housed in dorms on the Northwestern State campus. She will attend high school classes as well as college level courses and is able to graduate with her high school diploma and an Associate’s Degree
“I’m very excited … I think it’s a great opportunity and it’s something I very much wanted to accomplish,” Blakely said. “I think it really stood out to me because it’s on a college campus. There’s a lot of responsibility that comes with it.”
Prospective students apply to the school during the fall of their freshman or sophomore year. Applicants submit application forms, grade transcripts, SAT or ACT results, and four letters of recommendation with one optional recommendation form.
Blakely received her acceptance letter in March.
“From a young age, I’ve always wanted to get good grades and go to Harvard or another Ivy League school, and I knew that meant I needed to study and do everything I could to make it a reality,” she said. “I had to do high caliber work in school.”
Some of it, she says, also comes down to some natural skills she’s had throughout her life.
“It’s very easy for me to remember things,” she said. “I’m also very tough on myself. My mother always tells me to just do my best, but I crave perfection. I’m probably my toughest critic in a lot of cases.”
She has aspirations of going into the medical field one day, planning to study medicinal chemistry. Ultimately, she wants to use her talents to help people reclaim their health, something she says she’s been motivated to do since experiencing the difficulties of having family suffer through illness. She lost her grandmother to lung cancer in 2014, while her mother battled through her own bout with cervical cancer.
“I’ve wanted to find a way to help on a large scale,” Blakely said. “Find a vaccine, spread awareness … whatever I can do to make things better.”