Elijah Muhammad, 12, is Youngest Black College Student in Oklahoma

Francis Akhalbey September 17, 2022
Elijah Muhammad, 12, is studying cyber security at OCCC -- Image via KFOR

A 12-year-old home-schooled boy in Oklahoma achieved a commendable feat last month after he became the youngest Black college student in the state. In an interview with KFOR, Elijah Muhammad, who is a freshman at Oklahoma City Community College (OCCC), said his classmates’ reaction when he told them his age during his first lecture was that of shock.

“A bunch of them were like, ‘how old are you?’” Muhammad recalled. “Once I told them my age, they all got surprised.”

The 12-year-old is studying cyber security as his major, and he’s taking up three courses. “Computer Hardware, Introduction to Computer Technology, and Computer Operating Systems” said, Muhammad.

And though Muhammad’s achievement is laudable, he’s not the only person in his family to attain this academic milestone. His sister Shania, enrolled at OCCC when she was just 13. And besides being the youngest person to gain admission at the time, Shania also became the college’s youngest graduate. She was 14 when she graduated in May.

“We have a bunch of competitiveness,” Muhammad said. “But she really helps me out with a lot of my studying.” Their father also said the two siblings like going against each other. “When he sees her accomplish certain things, he’s like I’m up next and I can do it,” Elijah Sr said. “We are the cheering section for our scholars.”

The vice president of academic affairs at OCCC, Dr. Vincent Bridges, told the news outlet that there has been a paradigm shift with regard to student enrolment in college.

“We’re going to see a lot more individuals showing that they are cognitively ready and want to take that step, just like Elijah,” said Bridges.

Elijah is expected to graduate from OCCC at age 13, meaning he’s on course to break his sister’s record as the college’s youngest graduate. Outside academics, the 12-year-old runs a clothing line and is a three-time wrestling State champion.

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