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Two MHS students earn National AP Scholar honors

Posted: by Patricia Gibson, Communications Director
News Blog Category - News More than a dozen current Marion High School students and members of the MHS Class of 2018 have been recognized by the College Board for their excellent performance on multiple Advanced Placement tests in the 2017-18 school year, and two students have earned the highest national honor.

Zoe Case and Elizabeth Wuertley, both members of the MHS Class of 2018, were named National AP Scholars, the highest honor the College Board gives, for high scores on eight or more AP exams and a high average score on all tests taken.


Every year, the College Board, which administers AP exams, awards students who have excelled on multiple exams. AP exams are scored on a scale of 1 to 5. A score of 3 designates the student as “qualified” and capable of doing the work of an introductory-level course in a particular subject at college, according to the AP Program’s website. Many colleges and universities grant credit and placement for scores of 3, 4 or 5, but the AP Program’s website notes that each college decides which scores it will accept.

The achievements of these current Marion High School students and Class of 2018 graduates put MHS well ahead of the state and national mean scores on AP test scores in several subjects. Several of the students who earned AP honors this year have done so for two or even three years in a row.

Here’s a complete look at our AP honors this year, reflecting scores on tests taken in spring 2018:

National AP Scholars
(earning scores of 4 or higher on eight or more exams, with an average score of at least 4 on all exams taken)
  • Zoe Case, MHS Class of 2018
  • Elizabeth Wuertley, MHS Class of 2018
AP Scholars with Distinction
(earning scores of 3 or higher on five or more exams, with an average score of at least 3.5 on all exams taken)
  • Joshua Kelley, MHS Class of 2018
  • Kaylynn Scher, MHS Class of 2018
AP Scholars
(earning scores of 3 or higher on three or more exams)
  • Eliza Fry, MHS Class of 2018
  • Drake Gunyon, MHS Class of 2018
  • Sean Harnett, MHS Class of 2018
  • Joseph Hoffert, senior
  • Jessica Mooney, MHS Class of 2018
  • Zoe Orrell, senior
  • Samuel Vermilion, MHS Class of 2018
Since 1955, the rigorous Advanced Placement Program has enabled millions of students to take college-level courses and exams and to earn college credit or placement while still in high school.

According to a 2008 study, the AP Program’s website says, AP students have better four-year college graduation rates than those who did not take AP. Taking AP also increases eligibility for scholarships and makes candidates more attractive to colleges.

AP Scholar honors put the spotlight on students who excel in multiple subjects, and students may cite this academic distinction among their credentials on applications, resumes, and portfolios. (Learn more about the honors here.)

Marion High School requires that students taking an AP class take the corresponding AP exam in order to receive the extra credit available for the class. (All AP classes at MHS are “weighted”, meaning that students can earn more credit for those classes because of their difficulty, as compared to standard classes. But students who don’t take the AP exam won’t receive that extra credit.) This leads to a very high percentage of MHS AP students taking the corresponding exams — which makes the passing percentages achieved by MHS students in 2018 even more impressive.

Notable statistics from the 2018 AP exams at MHS:
  • 64 students passed one or more AP exams.
  • MHS students passed 15 different exams: Biology; Calculus (AB and BC); Chemistry; English Language and Composition; English Literature and Composition; Environmental Science; Music Theory; Physics 1; Psychology; Spanish Language and Culture; Statistics; U.S. History; World History; and the portfolio-based Studio Art Design 2D. The number of students taking a particular test ranged from 2 to 47.
  • 100 percent of MHS students who participated in the Studio Art 2D Design Portfolio exam passed; this surpasses the 84.8 percent passing rate nationwide. (Wondering what these portfolios consist of? You can see examples from previous years here.)
  • 100 percent of MHS students who took the English Literature and Composition exam passes; this surpasses the 47.4 percent passing rate nationwide.
  • 91.3 percent of MHS students who took the Calculus AB exam passed; this surpasses the 57.5 percent passing rate nationwide.
  • 90 percent of MHS students who took the Calculus BC exam passed; this surpasses the 80.3 percent passing rate nationwide.
  • 81 percent of MHS students who took the Biology exam passed; this surpasses the 61.5 percent passing rate nationwide.
  • 50 percent of the MHS students who took the Environmental Science exam passed; this surpasses the 47.5 passing rate nationwide.
Marion Community Schools is proud of these students’ excellent achievements, and is proud too of the early college opportunities MHS continues to offer to its students. For information about how your high school student can take advantage of these early college credit opportunities and more, check out the enrollment section of our website.