ALBERT Einstein and Professor Stephen Hawking have got nothing on a Solihull teenager – whose spur of the moment decision to take a Mensa IQ test has seen her ranked in the top one per cent of the country’s most intelligent people.
Shiuli Banerjee was inspired to test her mental capabilities after watching the Channel 4 programme Child Genius – and immediately signed up to take the organisation’s Supervised IQ Test ‘for a bit of fun’ and as a ‘personal challenge’.
What followed were two super-difficult exam papers which test ‘natural intelligence’ so can’t be prepared for – and a nerve-wracking two-week wait for the results.
But the nail biting turned out to be more than worth it when the results came through.
The 14-year-old Saint Martin’s School pupil had achieved a score in the 99th percentile in both papers – putting her in the top one per cent of Mensa members in the UK – and with a remarkable maximum score of 162 in the Catell III B paper.
Her outstanding results suggest an IQ of 162 – a whole two points higher than the estimated IQs of cosmologist Professor Stephen Hawking and theoretical physicist Albert Einstein.
Although neither Hawking or Einstein are believed to have taken the test, their IQs are both estimated at 160.
Shiuli said: “I had obviously hoped to do well, but to be in the top one per cent of all Mensa members is just amazing.
“I am so proud to be a part of a worldwide community of like-minded people and have already joined a range of special interest groups that I would not otherwise have discovered.”
When she’s not busy being a genius, Shiuli enjoys all the things you’d expect of a regular 14-year-old – hanging out with friends, music, playing piano, singing in choirs and anything creative.
Saint Martin’s Headteacher Nicola Smillie heaped praise on Shiuli, saying the school was delighted to have a Mensa member in its midst.
She added: “We are so proud of Shiuli and her achievement of becoming a Mensa member.
“She is a fantastic student in every way – and most importantly, a wonderful girl.
“The future, I’m sure, looks very bright for her.”