Shelbyville teen joins dad in Mensa society - | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

Shelbyville teen joins dad in Mensa society

Source: KTRE Staff Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff Source: KTRE Staff
Source: KTRE Staff Source: KTRE Staff

At 14, Ryan Florence has accomplished more than most teens his age.

"I'm 14 years-old, and I go to Panola College Early High School and also to Panola College for college studies," Ryan said. "I finished the 8th grade in three months and the 9th grade in five months."

Ryan was recently accepted to the Mensa program. The Mensa group was founded in 1946 and looked to engage society in intelligent conversation. The society welcomes people from every walk of life whose IQ is in the top 2 percent of the population.

Ryan joined the group after he tested for an IQ of 130. He was encouraged to join by his father Ken Florence, who is also in the group.

"I joined Mensa about 20 years ago when I was in law school," Ken said.

The two are part of a special group with Mensa. There are only about 1,800 families to have more than one person in the group. Ken said he is pleased with Ryan but knows there is a chance for more in the family to join the group. Ryan's younger brother and sister are also contemplating if they will take the test. Ken said at an early age he knew Ryan was special.

"He always amazes me," Ken said. "He would get a puzzle that was complex when he was young and put it together in no time and could sit there and do it forever with no problem. Over the summer he talked about wanting to make a solar company as a way to make money while in school, so we sat down and look at data and information, and we built out own solar panel at home. It puts out 1 Kilowatt so we are able to generate enough power to back up what is needed at the house."

Ryan said when he's not studying, he is reading some of his favorite books and doing brain teasers.

"I play mental games to test my metal abilities and play chess with my dad," Ryan said. "I also like to look at the stars and wonder what is out there in space."

Ryan has a 3.86 GPA out of a 4.0 scale. Ryan is still looking at where to go once he is done at Panola College.

To test yourself against the Mensa IQ test, click here.

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