Tri-City students among 22 honored for perfect ACT score

Gov. Ricketts (at center in red tie), NDE Commissioner Matt Blomstedt (front left), ACT CEO...
Gov. Ricketts (at center in red tie), NDE Commissioner Matt Blomstedt (front left), ACT CEO Janet Godwin (front row, right of center aisle), honorees, and guests at Monday’s ceremony to recognize students for top scores on the ACT.(Office of Governor Pete Ricketts)
Published: May. 24, 2022 at 8:47 AM CDT
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LINCOLN, Neb. (KSNB) - Twenty-two Nebraska students are the best of the best amongst their peers when it comes to the ACT.

Governor Pete Ricketts and the Nebraska Department of Education recognized these teens hard work and accomplishment for scoring the top score, a 36, on the exam.

“Achieving a top score on the ACT exam is an impressive feat,” said Gov. Ricketts.  “These top-performing students have dedicated themselves to academic excellence, and their hard work has paid off.  Thank you to the parents and teachers whose guidance has made their success possible.  To the students – congratulations!”

Of the 22 students, three of them hailed from the Tri-Cities and two more from areas in/near central Nebraska.

  • Isabella Cao- Kearney
  • Hung Vu- Kearney
  • Lilian Miller- Grand Island
  • Aaron Sturtevant- Holdrege
  • Alivia Pavel- York

NDE Commissioner Matt Blomstedt and ACT CEO Janet Godwin joined the Governor to recognize the students for their outstanding accomplishments.

In states like Nebraska, where all juniors take the ACT, only 1% actually score a 36.

Godwin praised these students that they were able to achieve what they did despite having to deal with the effects of COVID.

“It’s been a rough couple hard years and I think 36, coming out of the pandemic and all the disruption of our lives, is even more impressive,” she said.

She said when she looked into the audience, what she saw was hope and optimism because our future is in their hands and she feels good about that.

Education Commissioner Blomstedt hopes their future includes Nebraska.

“There’s a lot of opportunities for students right here in Nebraska to really commit and be part of the future, ultimately, for the state,” he said.


  • Jonathon “Jack” Cenovic, Omaha Brownell-Talbot
  • Allie Dingfield, Blair
  • Jenny Dong, Millard West
  • Cade Horn, Scottsbluff
  • Benjamin Lynch, Millard North
  • Elise Madden, Elkhorn South
  • Daniel Meyer, Omaha Creighton Prep
  • Michael Mullin, Elkhorn Mount Michael
  • Seth Pennell, Bellevue East
  • Jake Rance, Elkhorn North
  • Tyler Reidy, Omaha Creighton Prep
  • Anne Rogers, Omaha North
  • Josephine Rutar, Elkhorn South
  • Abigail Wessling, Omaha Mercy
  • Linda Xu, Elkhorn South
  • Richard Xu, Millard North
  • Jalan Zhu, Millard North

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