Advice From One of Broomfield’s Most Successful Students

How one student at Broomfield became a National Merit Scholarship Finalist.


Caedmon Burgtorf, a senior at Broomfield High School, is a finalist for the National Merit Scholarship.

Maddie Jackson, Staff Writer - Copy Editor

While seniors are deciding what colleges to attend and what subject to major in, underclassmen are dealing with the same old struggles: homework, sports, SATs, and everything in between.

A lot of them could use the advice that senior Caedmon Burgtorf has to offer.

For Burgtorf, the list goes on: a 1490 on the SAT, 10 AP classes—3 of which he got 5s on the AP exam—and a 4.5 weighted GPA. Not to mention his finalist position for the National Merit Scholarship.

How has he been able to accomplish all of this? Keep motivated? And make time with his demanding after-school activities?

Burgtorf’s personal strategies can apply to many students.

For starters, Burgtorf said that you should always focus on the things you like: “I kind of focused on what I was interested in more than anything else. I found that if I could really put my time and energy into classes that I enjoyed, then I would do well in those classes.”

But it takes more than just your interests. Burgtorf said the biggest factors in his success thus far have been his grit, hard work, and consistency through high school: “I honestly think it’s just sticking with it. I think grit is a huge part of school and being able to hold on to your successes and celebrate them. “

While those qualities will help you to be successful, one of the things Burgtorf highlighted was the importance of relationships with teachers. He said, “I do think a lot of it comes from relationships with teachers and having a positive relationship with them.”

Jim Davidson, who Burgtorf spotlighted as one of his most influential teachers here at Broomfield High School, describes Burgtorf as “reverent” (dutiful, for us non-language arts teachers). He “was always willing to answer tough questions. He was always willing to take a risk when others maybe were apprehensive.”

Davidson said that the reason Burgtorf was so successful in his class was his self awareness: “I feel like there was always kind of a confidence in him that maybe was a little beyond his years… Caedmon was a student who had no issues taking criticism. Criticism motivated him.”

Davidson described Burgtorf as an “ally” to all teachers, and it was a large part of why he’s had so much success as a student.

Another major part of this success, Burgtorf said, has also been to keep in mind that “high school is really hard sometimes.” But, ultimately, he said, “Don’t let that get you down because there will be moments where it gets easier.”

Burgtorf is looking at two colleges specifically right now and is hoping to study architecture.