It’s been a banner year for 15-year-old James “Jimmy” Chilimigras.
Not only has the Bay St. Louis teen been accepted to Loyola University New Orleans College of Law, but Chilimigras recently mastered the four-section, four-day Uniformed Certified Public Accountant Examination, historically becoming the youngest person to pass the test.
And not just in the Magnolia State.
Chilimigras is now set to become the youngest CPA in both the United States and across the globe. And that feat was only accomplished after he earned 150 college credit hours and passed challenging accounting classes.
“Relief,” was all Chilimigras said after completing and passing one of the most difficult professional exams in the world. According to the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants, it takes an average of six attempts for most CPA candidates to pass, which means the average accountant will fail at least twice on their journeys.
Chilimigras’ goal was to pass the exam before August when he begins law school in New Orleans.
“It’s nice to be done,” he said adding that the exams are extremely difficult. “It’s well put together and it’s difficult, but being hard is not what makes it a good test. It forces you to prepare and work for it, and it’s a good test because you learn so much in preparing and taking it. It’s a test that makes future CPAs better CPAs.”
Chilimigras also shattered an eight-year Guinness World Record when he passed the exam on June 8.
Belicia Cespedes set the bar high in 2015 after she passed the exam at only 17 and became the world’s youngest CPA. Chilimigras was so inspired by her accomplishment he pushed himself to dig in and work hard while he prepared for the test.
Chilimigras will now receive his full licensure from the Mississippi State Board of Public Accountancy after he submits his test results and work requirements for panel approval. The entire experience has garnered him an incredible testing background to draw from when he attends law school on a full merit-based scholarship.
His accomplishments now include passing the CPA exam, bachelor’s and master’s degrees in accounting, holding the highest LSAT score in 23 states, and having a 30+ ACT score at only 12 years old.
“Erin and I are very proud of Jimmy and proud that he, with all the other Mississippians, is contributing in his own small way to the history and legacy of our state,” said his father, John Chilimigras.
The teenager plans to specialize in tax law and is currently formulating educational methods to inspire fellow students with solid testing preparation strategies and lessened anxiety when reaching similar goals.
Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart wrote his first symphony at only eight years old. Mary Shelly wrote and published the classic novel Frankenstein by the time she was 20. A 21-year-old Steve Jobs co-founded Apple.
And at just 15, Chilimigras, who is poised and well-spoken beyond his years, has cemented his name as the youngest person to earn a CPA license.