"IF I don't feel as if I am going to go crazy, I'm probably not working hard enough," 17-year-old Nicolas McCaulsky told TEENage. That rule of thumb that he lives by guided him to copping a whopping 10 Grade Ones in the recent Caribbean Secondary Examination Council (CSEC) examinations, with seven straight A profiles.
He received his ones in English language, English literature, mathematics, information technology, physics, chemistry, social studies, technical drawing, geography, and Spanish.
"The world stood still for a second as my results were loaded," McCaulsky recalled that fateful night. "When the page came up, my attention was zoned in only on the grades column. My brother and I counted 10 ones (then) he grabbed and hugged me in excitement! We both started jumping. I didn't know what to do with myself. I couldn't believe I did it! I ran upstairs to Mommy's room, jumped on her bed and started shouting, 'I got 10 ones, Mommy!' Afterwards she hugged and kissed me. My 87-year-old grandfather cried when I told him my results the following day, which really moved me."
This near impossible feat was fuelled by an inspiration that is three-fold.
"It comes from the heavenly father, who has blessed me with everything I need to excel and my hard-working parents, who do their very best to provide all my needs and to ensure I have a comfortable life," the Kingston College student from Vineyard Town informed TEENage.
"I really wanted to show them how much I really appreciate and love them by paying back a fraction of what they have done for me and what better way to do so than giving them 10 ones."
"My final inspiration is life," McCaulsky continued. "I see the products of opportunity and preparation around me every day; people who have worked assiduously to reach where they are in life. Then there are the victims of lack of opportunity who may never get the opportunity that I have been so blessed to receive. The contrast is what fuels me to do well and not waste my blessing and potential."
McCaulsky plans to advance to the sixth form at Kingston College and later pursue a career in commercial aviation with hopes of becoming a pilot.
"The feeling was unexplainable," McCaulsky beamed, "but I can guarantee you it was the best I've ever had."