Trending Topics

‘An Inspirational Kid’: Black Pennsylvania 9-Year-Old Boy Makes History, Becomes One of the Youngest Ever to Graduate High School

A 9-year-old is making history in Pennsylvania by becoming one of the youngest U.S. high school graduates ever.

David Balogun recently received his diploma from Reach Cyber Charter School in Harrisburg, Pennsylvania, and now he has his sights set on something even bigger.

David is not a normal kid who loves video games and cartoons. Instead, he has a passion for science and computer programming.

David Balogun and his family post for a photo after his graduation. (Photo: Screenshot from WAGL 8 News Youtube Channel)

He took remote classes from his family home in the Philadelphia suburb of Bensalem and earned college credits after completing a semester at Bucks Community College. Now his parents are going through the process of finding the best college that fits their son’s needs and is accepting of his unique qualities. He has made that process a little easier for them by telling them the type of career he wants to pursue.

“I want to be an astrophysicist, and I want to study black holes and supernovas,” David said to WGAL 8 News.

David’s unique gifts don’t come as a surprise because both of his parents have advanced academic degrees. However, they have admitted there are challenges in raising someone uniquely talented like David.

“I had to get outside of the box,” David’s mother, Ronya, said to local media. “Playing pillow fights when you’re not supposed to, throwing the balls in the house. He’s a 9-year-old with the brain that has the capacity to understand and comprehend a lot of concepts beyond his years and sometimes beyond my understanding.”

The family also gives credit to David’s teachers for helping the young mind stay engaged without overwhelming him.

“They didn’t bog me down,” David said. “They … advocated for me, saying, ‘He can do this. He can do that.'”

His science teacher Cody Derr easily become one of his favorite teachers and explained that he learned from David as much as David learned from him.

“David was an inspirational kid, definitely one who changes the way you think about teaching,” said Derr.

David is the second youngest high-school graduate behind Michael Kearney. He did it back in 1990 at the tender age of 6. Kearney also went on to become the youngest college graduate at 10 years old when he earned a bachelor’s degree in anthropology from University of South Alabama.

Recently, Caleb Anderson and Sydney Wilson gained attention as two Black children who have accomplished extraordinary academic achievements.

Now at 14, Anderson is one of the youngest college students at Georgia Institute of Technology in recent memory. In 2021, at 13 years old, he enrolled in the aerospace engineering program. The Georgia native from Marietta, a suburb in metro Atlanta, breezed through his studies at Shreiner Academy and Chattahoochee Technical College before transferring his 57 college credits to Georgia Tech.

Wilson made headlines in 2020 when she became the youngest person ever to attend Spelman College in Atlanta, Georgia. She started high school at the age of 10 years old and was studying advanced placement classes by the time she was 12.

David has a chance to continue making history, like Anderson and Wilson, after his parents make a final decision on where he will attend college.

“Am I going to throw my 9-year-old into Harvard while I’m living in [Pennsylvania]?” Henry, David’s father, said of their college search: “No.”

Back to top