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A tale of certified genius

Posted: November 28, 2008 9:54 p.m.
Updated: November 29, 2008 4:59 a.m.
 

Mensa recently accepted a new member into its group of geniuses: Valencia's Angelica Boggs.

Boggs recently joined the Greater Los Angeles Area Mensa, a chapter of American Mensa.

To join Mensa, an international organization with more than 100,000 members, Boggs had to score in the top 2 percent of the general population.

A 32-year-old mother of four, Boggs took the Mensa test, along with five others, at California State University, Northridge in October.

"The test was pretty difficult," Boggs said. "I didn't think that I passed parts of it."

Boggs received her acceptance letter six weeks after the test.

"I'm proud to be a new member of Mensa," she said. "I've always been intellectually curious and now I have a place where I can nurture the side of me that loves to learn."

The test, which can only be taken once in a lifetime, lasted 45 minutes and consisted of brain puzzles, a few math problems and some memory tests, Boggs said.

One part involved remembering and answering specific questions about a very detailed story.

Part of what makes Boggs' story extraordinary is the Mensa organization provides absolutely no information on how to study for the test. There are no opportunities to retake it.

Boggs graduated from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo with a bachelor of science in computer science, and worked on testing algorithms for pacemakers at St. Jude Medical, a medical research company. She plans to eventually earn her master's in computer science, and hopes to become a teacher.

Rather than taking the Mensa test, prospective members can also submit scores from several different standardized intelligence tests, such as the California Test of Cognitive Skills or the Differential Ability Scales. Mensa requires IQ scores on these tests of around 130.

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