BALTIMORE (WJZ)– He beat incredible odds, but luck had nothing to do with it. Hard work did.
Gilman school senior Mekhi Johnson was accepted to all eight Ivy League colleges.
Johnson made it a goal when he was just a first grader at Gilman, saying “when I was six, I heard a radio story about a kid who got accepted into all eight, and I turned to my mom and said I’m going to do that one day.”
Then late last month over dinner, Johnson started checking his phone “and my mother screamed when I got into Harvard, and everyone in the restaurant turned to us, and she said ‘my son just got into Harvard!'”
That was just the start of the screams.
“Yep, one after another, and then I got to the last one and was like, ‘if I get into this, I get into all eight.’ And I read it and I was just shell shocked,” he said. “I couldn’t believe it.”
“He worked for 12 years to accomplish that goal,” said Gilman teacher Cheryl Nkeba. “He made sure he had the grades, he made sure he had the involvements in school that would appeal to the colleges.”
This year there were 280,000 applications to the Ivy League schools. Only three were accepted at all eight.
“I had a lot of hope and put a lot of hard work into those applications,” Johnson said.
The senior isn’t sure yet which college he will attend. He has until May 1 to make a decision.