Dorothy Jean “DJ” Tillman earned her bachelor’s degree at just 12 years old from New York’s Excelsior College, reports Albany’s News 10.
Tillman originally hails from the South Side of Chicago and had an associate degree under her belt. “There are some great things coming out of the south side of Chicago and this, my baby, is one of the greatest of them all,” said Tillman’s mom, Jemelita.
Tillman was nicknamed Dorothy Genius by her mother. A child care provider was the first person to point out the young girl’s maturity. “My child care provider Miss Mary first noticed, she said you got a special baby that you need to understand at this baby is been here before I had no idea with this baby you been here before Meant,” Jemelita said.
“Dorothy, I believe started doing double digits by four or three and we are really excited about the way she loved learning.”
Tillman wants to pursue a master’s in environmental engineering. “I want to go into my master’s in environmental engineering, but I do want to take a couple of gap months.”
Despite people saying she is missing out on childhood, both Tillman and her mother disagree. They say she still has a social life with other members from her peer groups.
“In our culture, intellectualism is an academic achievement that has been diminished over time, and I think it’s incredibly important, particularly at a time when there are questions about the value of higher education,” Tillman’s mother said.
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Christina Santi is a news and culture writer for EBONY.com. Born and raised in the Bronx, New York, she considers herself a well-read, not so traditional feminist with a heavy interest in music, fashion and pop culture. Christina currently lives in New York City, where she refers to her Cuban & Jamaican descent often while writing about her experiences as a first-generation Afro-Latinx in America. She also devotes time writing personalized reading material for her tutees and turning ideas into words for streetwear brand, PUER By Noel Bronson.