A wealthy Chinese man claims that this is his 27th attempt at failing the demanding university entrance exams in his nation.
Liang Shi, 56, learned on Friday that he had only received 424 out of 750 points.
34 points less than the minimum score required to apply to any Chinese university.
This year, exams were taken by almost 13 million students. Mr. Liang has previously received local media attention for his initiatives to pursue higher education.
Mr. Liang told local media that despite having taken the exams numerous times since 1983, he was disappointed in his performance this time around and questioned whether his dream would ever come true.
The Sichuan-based man told Chinese news outlet Tianmu News, "I used to say 'I just don't believe I won't make it', but now I'm torn.
High school graduates take the notoriously challenging Gaokao exam, which assesses their knowledge of Chinese, mathematics, English, and a second science or humanities subject of their choice.
According to Chinese government statistics, in 2021, only 41.6 percent of exam takers were accepted into colleges or universities.
In a nation where a degree is thought to be necessary for a good job, the Gaokao is seen as a make-or-break opportunity, especially for those from poorer families.
Since the 1950s, the tests have served as the center of the nation's educational system, despite being suspended during the Cultural Revolution.
For Mr. Liang, he claimed that his lifelong ambition was to enter a prestigious university and grow up to be an "intellectual.".
After failing on his first attempt in 1983, when he was 16 years old, he worked at various jobs while continuing to apply every year until 1992, when he was deemed to be too old.
Mr. Liang started his own wholesale timber company in the mid-1990s after the factory he worked at filed for bankruptcy the same year.
In less than a year, he earned one million yuan and went on to launch a construction materials company, quickly establishing himself as a much more successful businessman than a student.
He restarted his education, however, in 2001 after the Chinese government lifted the Gaokao's age restriction. Up until this point, Mr. Liang had only missed the yearly exams because of sickness or a demanding work schedule.
He claimed that over the years, his motivation for making repeated attempts to change his destiny had changed to a stubborn refusal to give up.
In 2014, he stated to a local news source, The Papers, "I think it's such a pity if you don't go to college, your life won't be complete without higher education.".
He once more drove himself to a testing facility to take the exams on June 7 of this year.
called "the No. He had given up drinking and mahjong to concentrate on his studies, becoming known as "1 Gaokao holdout".
Yet again, however, it was not to be.
Mr. Liang claimed that, in contrast to previous years, he is beginning to feel defeated.
He admitted to Tianmu News, "I've been wondering if I should keep going.". "Perhaps I really should examine myself. ".
Mr. Liang expressed additional doubts in a second interview with a Sichuan outlet.
Next year, he said, "I might give up.". "If I go to it next year, if I don't succeed, I'll give up my last name Liang.