When I think back to what I was doing at age 11, it was really nothing really to alert the media about. I was not quite at my awkward “braces & Catcher in the Rye” middle school phase yet (thankfully), I clearly had no idea what I wanted to do with my life, still was basically thriving on a diet of chicken nuggets and Kraft mac & cheese, and stressed beyond reason with my 6th grade Pre-Algebra class. College was not quite on my mind, nor none of my peers minds. That seemed light-years away, in fact.
Tanishq Abraham is an entirely different kind of kid. He’s much more like a superkid. He didn’t get one or even two associate degrees…he got three! At the ripe age of 11, after just obtaining 3 associate degrees in math and physical science, general science, and language studies, Abraham modestly looks at his present accomplishments. Instead, he feels that his true calling will be reaching for his true dreams…to become a doctor, a medical researcher, and president of the United States.
In the eyes of just about everyone else, this is a huge undertaking for a child. Halfway to a bachelor’s degree and not even through puberty yet. Plus, he’s got to give himself a lot of credit for also snagging the milestone of being quite possibly (and likely) the youngest graduate from American River College in Sacramento, California in its entire 60-year history. However, Abraham told a local news channel KCRA, that getting his associate degrees wasn’t “much of a big thing for me.”
A Path to Success
At just four years old, Abraham began being homeschooled after feeling “bored” in his classes. (Which brings up a pretty valid question: what kinds of classes are four-year-olds enrolled in these days? My preschool class literally was just playtime, story circles, and eating Goldfish crackers…) That same year, Tanishq joined Mensa, a group for people with the top 2% of IQ scores.
Last June, at age 10, Abraham completed California’s early-exit high school exam, allowing him to graduate high school with a 4.0 GPA. This wowed not only several homestate officials, but also sparked the attention of President Barack Obama who sent him a congratulatory message.
In college, Tanishq said that some fellow graduates and students were “intimidated” by him while others seemed thrilled to have a kid in their class.
A Family Affair
But, Tanishq, despite “coming out smart,” as his father, Bijoui said, may not have had such a successful run without the support of an equally exceptional family. Tanishq’s father, who is a software engineer, has seen his own share of academic achievements such as earning a perfect SAT score for math and a degree from Cornell University.
Tanishq’s mother, in fact, put her own Ph.D classes on the backburner so that she could homeschool him. Additionally, his little sister, Tiara, is also a member of Mensa and takes classes at America River College as well. She’s also a really amazing singer.
“Even in kindergarten,” his mother Taji Abraham said, “he was a few years ahead. It just went from there.”
So, what’s next for him?
While most 11-year-olds would be planning some epic squirtgun fights, playing videogames, and relaxing, Tanishq has something a little different in store for him. He’ll be going on a family vacation and taking an eight-week Calculus II course. Let’s keep an eye on this kid…he just may be the future doctor, medical researcher, or president of the country that he dreams of.