How The Smartest Kids In High School Actually Turned Out According To Classmates

Where I went to school there was a special program that the super smart could enroll in.

It was called 'The International Baccalaureate.'

It's an intense program of elite classes, taught by the finest minds, and triple the homework of everyone else.

It was assumed that every student in the program would go onto rule the world.

Some did. Some most definitely did not.

Others cracked under the pressure of the program and fell apart by sophomore year.

So you never know.

Redditor Desperate_Bluejay330 asked about all the about the students who scored all those A's.

"What happened to the smartest kid at your high school?"

I'm not sure about my smarty pants people. Now I have to go look them up.


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"He was actually quite overweight. When he left for college, he was studying physics. Couple of years later, I learned that he lost 175 pounds, became super into fitness, dropped out of college and became a gym trainer."


Into the Sky...

"He's a NASA scientist, while I just come on Reddit."


"I heard that the smartest guy in my class worked at NASA. I just looked up his LinkedIn and he's a mechanical engineer who works in manufacturing. Nothing aerospace related. Still much more impressive than anything I've ever done."


A Good Life

"He lives in the same small village he was living in when we were in school, is married with kids and apparently works in an office in the nearest town. He had aspirations of becoming a surgeon when we were in school, it didn't happen, but it sounds like he's living a good life regardless."


"Similar. Top in our class went and got a masters in math, then moved back home and became the local librarian, but they have a wonderful family. Didn't change the world but they're happy. That's the real dream."


Who Knows?

"I couldn’t tell you what 99% of people from my high school are doing now."


"Lol... I got ya beat. I can honestly say that I have zero idea what 100% of the people I went to HS with are up to now. I graduated 22 years ago, the moment I was done… I was done lol."


"I guess that shows that my high school friends were truly good friends and we got along because we have a Christmas gathering beer exchange each year since like 2011 or so. There’s like 30 of us."


Career Changes

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"Became a doctor, decided it wasn't for her and went to law school. Is currently a barrister as far as I know."


"Sounds like my paternal uncle! He became an electrical engineer, decided it wasn't his thing, then became a patent attorney."


Doctor and lawyer? I type. Lord I'm lazy.


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"Completely fell off the radar. I assume he's running some sort of nefarious think-tank for a huge tech company or something."



"I still talk to him. He's a good friend of mine, still. He's an engineer at Google now. I am not."


"Smartest guy in our class (finished Calc BC in 10th grade, ended up going to a local college to take discrete mathematics and linear Algebra, graduated from CalTech, etc.) ended up working at Google and Facebook as a data scientist. I would be shocked if his net worth wasn't in the mid 7 figures at this point just off of equity."


The 3

"There were 3 I would argue were the smartest. They were all neck and neck for the valedictorian and salutatorian title. 2 of them I was never really close to so I have no idea what they're doing exactly. One of them moved out half way across the country and had a child and the other was a Jehovah's witness and there was something about them not being allowed to go to university for what they wanted to do. Other than that I don't know what they're doing."

"The other was actually a good friend I knew since the 3rd grade but we fell in and out of each other's lives. Life changed directions for them as far as aspirations go. Originally he was part way through a master's program for human kinetics but he realized it wasn't going to pan out as expected so he went into teaching. Now he's married, has a kid and overall happy I believe."


Still call him...

"Valedictorian of my high school is still one of my best friends, I was even the best man at his wedding. He went to the Army after graduating from Yale, became a Ranger then went into JSOC or something. Now he has a wife and two kids and works at the Pentagon. I stayed the nerd route and became a chemical and petroleum engineer."


Fit as a Fiddle

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"He's a scientist (something related to nutrition) and a big fitness Youtuber."

"As an interesting anecdote, he might have started go to the gym during the last couple years of grade school but was still unassuming and tiny. I removed him from Facebook shortly after and was pretty dumbfounded when I stumbled upon his channel years later."

"It's not hard to believe he was that successful but didn't expect to see him jacked or on Youtube."

"Also we lived in a relatively small and pretty redneck town. There were social groups and cliques like an 80's movie - Of the popular kids or jocks he was the only one to actively oppose his friends bullying people."


Harvard Bound

"She got her Ph.D in Chemistry from Harvard and is now Dean of the Science Department at our local state university, of about 20k students. Went to a high school in a town of about 4,500 people. Still see her occasionally."


Double Major

He went to college and double majored in business and biomechanical engineering at a very good school. Graduated, and is apparently doing research for some big company. Dude is smart AF.


Flip The Script

"Not my class, like 15 years after I graduated. I visited my hs to see an old teacher who was retiring. While talking to the principle he tells me about this student who was legit one of the most brilliant students the school had had in decades. He wanted to be a chef. (I am one). Cut to the graduation and he is due to give his speech."

"The one they approved was totally dropped. He gave a scathing tirade against all the teachers for not supporting him and kept pushing him to not follow his dreams and to just go to regular college. I heard it was brutal."

"(Kid had a scholarship to several top culinary programs already, his family owned a successful restaurant).

"He is a happy chef. His family doesn’t support the school anymore."

"My years smart folks are all married and grandparents by now."


Well it's nice to see that studying pays off... sometimes.

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Photo by Usman Yousaf on Unsplash

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