This 18-Year-Old College Grad Is Already On To The Next Degree
Howard University graduate Nkechinyere Chidi-Ogbolu is on to the next one ― but this is no reference to her love life. At just 18 years old, she’s already working towards her second college degree.
Last Saturday, Chidi-Ogbolu graduated magna cum laude from Howard with her Bachelor of Science in Chemical Engineering. This fall, she’ll be beginning a doctoral program for biomedical engineering at the University of California-Davis.
Chidi-Ogbolu, who was raised in Nigeria, skipped fifth grade in the primary school she attended in the country. Before beginning Howard at 14 years old, she graduated from a British school system where the highest level of education was the 11th grade.
She told the university’s student publication The Hilltop that it’s common for children in Nigeria to graduate high school at 16 years old ― which is partly why she told the publication she didn’t think graduating college at 18 was anything noteworthy.
Yeah, happens all the time.
“I didn’t think graduating at 18 was a big deal,” she told The Hilltop. “But, when everyone else said they were proud of me, I felt emotional to get recognition from so many people.”
She said she doesn’t find age to be a determinant of academic potential. And she may have a point. In the past few weeks, there have been a number of stories of exceptional high-school aged teenagers attaining college degrees and beyond.
“I never felt learning was age-related. If you were taught the material and you’re serious about learning, you’ll be fine – regardless of your age,” Chidi-Ogbolu continued. “I didn’t find courses any more difficult than the typical college student.”
Her ultimate goal is to find cures for health ailments, especially those most likely to affect Nigerian citizens.
“I want to help fix illnesses like Ebola and other diseases – major or minor,” she said. “I want to help people in Nigeria.”