Derek Onserio, 17, is not an ordinary high school senior. He is one sharp-witted intrepid ready to face the future with optimism. Derek has been waiting to find out which Ivy school would accept him, but when the day to check the results came, he chose to first watch his favorite team, Minnesota Timberwolves play the Los Angeles Lakers.
Derek says he had prepared himself for the worst, but that is hard to believe of someone who is a huge critic of ACT scores and GPAs, that he says college admissions are often reduced to.
When Derek decided to check the results online at 10:30 pm, he found out that he had been accepted to all eight schools he had applied to. He was a favorite to Yale, Columbia, Harvard, Brown, Princeton, Cornell, the University of Pennsylvania and Dartmouth.
“I could barely believe it,”….. the 17-year-old said. He said at some point he thought they made a mistake.
When Derek broke the news to his Kenyan-native parents, he decided to first pull a prank on them, telling them that he had not been accepted into any of the schools he applied to. However, Derek’s smiley face let him down, forcing him to tell them the truth.
“I didn’t believe it,” said his dad, Joshua Onserio Isabok.
Although Derek scored the best grades, he does not support the current grading system of ACT scores and GPAs that college admissions consider to gauge students’ capacity. He believes work outside the classroom played the biggest and most important role in getting him selected.
Derek is not only book-smart but is also impeccable in singing, acting, and dancing. “My life revolves around theater season,” he said.
He is currently reviewing the schools to determine which one better suits his goals and aspirations.
Derek’s two sisters also attend Ivy League schools at Dartmouth and Harvard. He is in a dilemma because they both want him to go to their schools because they believe their schools are the best.
Derek’s parents, Isaboke and his wife migrated to Minnesota from Kenya over 20 years ago, and they have brought up their children with a clear understanding of the importance of education.