At age 11, Tanishq Abraham was the youngest this year to graduate from a Sacramento college with three degrees on Wednesday night, and possibly in the school’s 60-year-history.
“The assumption is that he’s the all-time youngest,” American River College spokesman Scott Crow told NBC Bay Area on Thursday. “But we don’t have all the archives to completely confirm. He was definitely the youngest this year.”
Tanishq walked across the stage, complete with rainbow-colored scarf knit by his 82-year-old grandmother and decked-out cap with reference to “Toy Story’s” mantra “To Infinity and Beyond.”
Quite the overachiever, Tanishq didn’t earn just one associates degree from the community college. He earned three. They are in math and physical science, general science and language studies.
Afterward, he told NBC affiliate KCRA that the entire ordeal, especially sitting next to classmates twice his age and size, wasn’t “much of a big thing for me.”
He said some of the roughly 1,800 or so graduates and other college classmates were “intimidated of me.” But others liked having his young spirit around. “A lot were really happy that there was a kid in their class,” he said. As for his parents, they looked pretty low-key about their son’s unsual accomplishments at such an young age. “Even in kindergarten,” his mother Taji Abraham said, “he was a few years ahead. It just went from there.” Tanishq made headlines last year as well, when he graduated from high school at age 10, eight years earlier than most Americans do. He was home-schooled because he got “bored” in regular school, and ended up graduating with a 4.0 GPA.
His mother, a veterinarian, put her own Ph.D studies on hold to teach him, though his studies were complemented by taking classes at American River College since he was 7 years old. His father, Bijou, a software engineer and Cornell University graduate who himself earned a perfect SAT score in math, said in a previous interview: “He came out smart.” When he was 4, Tanishq joined Mensa International, a group for people whose IQ is in the top 2 percent of the population. His sister, Tiara, who is now 9 and quiet a singer, also joined Mensa and also takes classes at American River College.
As for post college plans, Tanishq’s summer plans include taking an eight-week Calculus II course and a family vacation. And for the long-term future? He’s toying with the ideas of becoming a doctor, medical researcher or president of the United States.
by NBC Bay Area.