A pupil who was one of the 13 to get the top marks in the country in the Leaving Certificate took no grinds but studied every week night and every Saturday for a year.
Jack Synnott, from Termonfeckin, Co Louth, turns 18 next week and is already plotting a career in journalism, once he takes Law and Politics in Trinity College.
He opened his results at St Oliver's Community College in Drogheda to find eight grade ones at higher level and a grade three in a ninth subject.
Dublin schools cleaned up with seven out of 13 students receiving eight H1's in today's Leaving Cert results.
Students in Kildare, Wicklow, Limerick, and Louth received the equivalent to the old higher level A1.
The schools where the students attended are:
- Holy Faith secondary school in Clontarf, Dublin;
- Loreto College, St Stephen's Green, Dublin 2;
- St Vincent's Castleknock College, Dublin 15;
- Blackrock College, Dublin;
- Two students in Coláiste Eoin, Baile An Bhóthair, Dublin;
- Clongowes Wood College, Clane, Kildare;
- Confey College, Leixlip, Kildare;
- St Olivers Community College, Drogheda, Co Louth;
- St Gerards school, Bray, Wicklow;
- Hazlewood College, Dromcollogher, Limerick;
- Ashfield College, Dundrum, Dublin
One of Jack's top ambitions is to find out if he came first in the class of 2017.
"Oh definitely," he said.
"I'm very competitive. When the principal told me that I could have the highest in the country I got very excited."
Jack and his parents Gráinne and Michael took the decision not to take grinds as he set a target to push himself to see what he could achieve on his own.
"I really wanted to challenge myself going into sixth year and see how much I could achieve," he said.
"I just kept pushing myself to see how much I could do on my own.
"The teachers at St Oliver's were so great.