There are some very intelligent children in our community and Thessalonika Arzu-Embry is definitely one of them. She is on her final leg of her collegiate undergrad tour. Amazing!
The 14 year old girl from the Chicagoland area should be getting ready for her first year in high school. Most of her peers are doing just that as they think about boys, school dances, and if they will be stuffed into a locker. Thessalonika is thinking about what outfit she will wear under her college graduation gown and where she will be attending graduate school next semester.
Clearly, she is a child genius, but she enjoys having fun like most other 14 year old. For her, this means playing tennis and just having a good time, but she doesn’t allow her studies to slip at all.
Believe it or not, she has been attending college since she was 11 years old thanks to her mother’s keen eye for her intelligence, willingness to continue reading and educating her child, and her outstanding homeschooling sessions.
From Charisma News: “It’s similar to any environment but this environment was full of learning, a learning experience for me,” she told CBN News. “I looked forward to it.”
An Early Passion for Learning
Thessalonika’s mother, Wonder Embry, said she noticed her daughter’s exceptional gift and passion for learning while home schooling her.
“I started reading to her my college books and she understood college material at 6 years old, 8 years old,” she said.
“The first topic that I read about was consciousness in sleeping dreams and about the neurons in the brain and I thought that was very interesting to study,” Thessalonika recalled.
Her mom said her daughter’s quickness for learning encouraged her to enroll the then 11-year-old in classes at Lake County College.
“Academically and mentally she was prepared for it,” her mom said. “And I didn’t want to put a cap on it and hinder her and limit her if she was able to accomplish it. And I just went on and encouraged her to go ahead and make the most of it.”
Many see Thessalonika’s academic aptitude as extraordinary, but the girl genius sees her college experience as just the norm.
“I was treated normal in class and a lot of classes didn’t bring attention to my age at all,” she said. “I just completed the work like the rest of the students.”
Thessalonika has a 199 I.Q. and she said she never once felt overwhelmed by college-level work.
“Some of the assignments had, like, two pages of work and stuff and that was very easy to complete,” she said. “There were some assignments that required only five pages of work and I went like way over the amount.”
The impressive teen has received numerous awards and certificates, is a member of her school’s honor college, and served as a student senator.
What is the key to her academic success? God
The young teen attributes her academic success to God saying, “I thank God for that because he has given me the ability to learn like in Proverbs 28:5. It says ‘They that seek the Lord understand all things.’ And I’m very thankful for that,”
She attends Bill Winston Ministries in Forest Park, Ill, with her family and is very devoted to the church, her faith, and clearly her academic studies.
The young teen has big dreams for her future, as you can imagine. After she finished her classes at College of Lake County in Illinois, she moved on to Chicago State University. This is where she is currently set to graduate with her bachelor’s degree in psychology. And yes, her grade point average is outstanding. It is 3.9.
What’s next for the young scholar?
GRADUATE SCHOOL & OPENING A BUSINESS WITH HER BROTHER!
Not only does the young lady desire to continue her scholarship, but she also wants to open a business. What an inspiration for children and people all over the world. She sends the message that education is clearly important, but she understands we need a strong economic engine in the community and she plans on doing just that.
Her desire is to open a psychology clinic after she continues her graduate studies.
No word on where she desires to attend graduate school just yet, but it is safe to say she has options.
Outstanding, young lady and family. UI salutes you!
PUBLIC NOTE: The opinions expressed in this article are the author's own and do not reflect the view of the Urban Intellectuals, affiliates or partners.