Indian-American Graduates as a Biomedical Engineer at 14, Now Going for a Ph.D.

An Indian-American boy graduated as a biomedical engineer from the University of California, Davis at the young age of 14.

Born in Sacramento, Tanishq Abraham made headlines in 2015 after graduating with degrees in Mathematical and Physical Sciences, General Science and Foreign Language Studies from the American River College with a stellar grade point average (GPA) of 4.0. He was only 11 years old.

Tanishq is back in the news after earning his degree in biomedical engineering from the University of California, Davis on Father’s Day, just a few days after he turned 15. His graduation cap read, “Started at 12, finished at 14. Trust me I am an engineer!”

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Tanishq, who finished summa cum laude, told Fox40, “Of course I feel very happy, very excited, and I’m very proud of my accomplishments.”

Image via University of California, Davis

Tanishq is a true child prodigy, cracking math courses from Stanford University’s Education Program for Gifted Youth (EPGY) in less than six months at the age of 5.

He then took online high school and college-level classes in biology, chemistry, geology, and paleontology at age 6.

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As a 7-year-old, Tanishq was already completing courses in astronomy and geology at American River College — and topping both classes.

Image via Facebook / Tanishq & Tiara Abraham

“We don’t feel they have missed out on ‘normal’ childhood. What is normal for some might not be normal for others!” Taji Abraham said about her son and his sister Tiara, who also happens to be an achiever.

But Tanishq’s success may not be entirely surprising considering that he comes from a well-educated family. His mother is a veterinarian, while his father, Bijou, is a software engineer. Both his grandparents are retired professionals with doctorate degrees in veterinary medicine.

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Nonetheless, Tanishq had to endure stress levels beyond his age — especially in his senior year.

And after graduation, he still had to present a senior design project, attend a conference and participate in a three-day entrepreneurship crash course with graduate students, postdoc scholars, and professors.

Image via Bijou Abraham

The Times of India quoted Taji as saying:

“This year has been very hard for him and us as we also have to be on campus late sometimes till 11 pm when he is working on his design project or capstone project. Sometimes his 22-year-old classmates cannot understand why he cannot do an all-nighter!

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“As parents, we are very particular that both our kids get enough rest and sleep — a minimum of nine hours to 10 hours. But in the past few months in his senior year, it has come down to three to four hours.”

Image via Twitter / @iScienceLuvr

Tanishq is now headed for a doctorate degree in Davis, but he still plans to pursue medical school in the next four to five years. He hopes to find new treatments for cancer.

“Yeah, of course, what everybody likes to say and what I am also interested in is, of course, cancer and developing new treatments for cancer, more effective treatments for cancer.”

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