SACRAMENTO (AP) — An 11-year-old Northern California boy who last year was lauded by President Barack Obama for becoming one of the youngest in the nation to graduate high school has now earned three community college degrees.
Sacramento native Tanishq Abraham skipped first grade, completed second grade, and then started taking classes part-time at American River College when he was 7.
He was by far the college’s youngest student.
His degrees, which he picked up last week, are in general science, math and physical science, and foreign language studies.
“He pretty much breezed through it,” his dad Bijou Abraham said.
Home-schooled since the age of 7, the boy passed a state exam in spring 2014 that certified he had met the academic standards to receive his high school diploma.
“The way my brain works is that when you give me something, information about that topic comes into my mind,” he said last year after receiving a high school diploma.
He then started taking college classes full time.
Still, the family makes sure he isn’t losing out on his childhood, which including spending time with friends his age.
“He is very social, outgoing. Nothing fazes him,” his dad said.
When he’s not studying or on campus, he enjoys playing video games and swimming.
Most of Tanishq’s college classmates and fellow graduates are, of course, older. But the boy says most are “really glad I’m in their class.”
His mom said she suspected her son was gifted, but didn’t know until she saw the results of an IQ test. Tanishq joined Mensa, a group for people whose IQ is in the top 2 percent of the population, at the age of 4.
The boy’s 9-year-old sister, Tiara is also takes classes at the college and was recently inducted into an honors society at the Sacramento junior college, her father said. Both children have a knack for picking up foreign languages with Tiara studying Spanish and Italian.
Tanishq hopes to attend Stanford University in Palo Alto or a University of California campus to major in biomedical engineering or a related field. He has also talked of his dream of becoming president of the United States.