By Simi Ayeni
Meet 12-year-old college graduate Dorothy Jean “DJ” Tillman who is from the south-side of Chicago.
DJ received her Associates in Psychology from the College of Lake County and her bachelor of Liberal Arts all at the age of 12.
DJ has plans to continue on to receive her masters in environmental engineering.
Unlike most of her peers who are trying to get through middle or high school, she is instead celebrating getting her college diploma.
“I want to (get) my masters in environmental engineering,” said D.J. Tillman who is 12. “I do want to take a couple gap months.”
However D.J. already has an associates degree under her belt.
“School wasn’t just as fun anymore. It wasn’t as fast paced,” D.J. said.
On Friday, she walked into the commencement at Excelsior College to get her bachelor’s degree.
DJ is setting new records and getting ahead in life, even her mother Jemelita Tillman said this girl from the south side of Chicago is beating all the odds.
“My child care provider Miss Mary first noticed. She said ‘you got a special baby that you need to understand’.”
DJ’s short for Dorothy Jean, but her Mom, Jemielita nicknamed her Dorothy Genius.
“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,” Jemelita Tillman said.
“With environmental engineering it’s all about helping people, the environment, and that’s just what I love to do,” DJ said.
Most people are worried that DJ has lost her childhood or is missing out on being young, however, D.J. and her mother don’t feel like she’s missing out on being a child.
“It’s not that I just lock myself away from the world and do school all day. I still have friends and we go to the park and go to movies,” she said.
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