by Jessica Murphy

Just like her friends, 13-year-old Kimora Hudson will be purchasing school supplies to prepare for the upcoming school year. However, it won’t be high school that she is looking forward to attending. Instead, Kimora will be the youngest student enrolled for the fall 2017 semester at the University of West Georgia.

College at 13: Teen Enrolls at UWG for Fall 2017At a young age, Kimora’s family knew how advanced she was going to be.

“When she was a baby, this was always the vision,” Fawn Hudson, Kimora’s mother, explained. “Even when she was a few months old her doctor was saying she is a little advanced.”

When Kimora was four, her mother began a mentor program based on human growth and development that encouraged her to think outside the box and beyond academics. This program encourages young people to go out and follow their dreams and not wait. In 4th grade, Kimora became aware of students graduating from college before getting their high school diplomas, and she set a personal goal to become one of those people.

“All throughout my life my mom was always making sure I was prepared for everything,” Kimora explained. “My parents know what I need, and they always strive for me to do my best.”

The UWG dual enrollment program is offered to 10th, 11th and 12th grade students who wish to take college level coursework for credit towards both high school and college graduation requirements. However, Kimora was lucky and was able to apply for the program whenever 9th grade students were being accepted.

“It was ironic that the year she was going into 9th grade the laws changed to allow the advanced 9th graders a chance, so I said this is it,” Fawn explained. “As soon as she applied and got accepted they took away the 9th grade component. So when that happened, I knew this was meant to be.”

However Kimora is not completely new to college classes. The past two summers she had the opportunity to take a section of a college class for fun at Vanderbilt University. This enabled her to expand her knowledge and experiences in fields she is most interested in.

“I love science and I know I want to go into the medical field,” Kimora stated. “I really like psychology and neurology, or anything dealing with the brain. Last year I took a class called the Psychology of Memory and it was really interesting. Since my mom works with psychology I have been exposed to it and I really like it.”

One thing Kimora is excited about by coming to UWG is all the new experiences she will encounter and the chance to branch out and become involved in new organizations, such as the intramural sports UWG offers.

“The experience seems so different,” Kimora mentioned. “It is kind of scary but so interesting at the same time. I want to try new things and be exposed to new things.”

In addition to sports, Kimora is excited for all the friends she can make along the way.

“I’m excited to meet new people,” Kimora said. “I don’t know anyone who is [dual enrolled] in high school. As the years go by, I will probably know people who end up doing it, but right now I just get to meet new people.”

One of the biggest adjustments, however, will be the change in her daily schedule and school environment.

“Just going from middle school to college classes is a whole different environment,” Kimora said. “In middle school, people don’t want to be there, but in college everyone will be serious and focused on learning. It will be a more serious environment.”

During her free time, Kimora is still able to find time to enjoy her childhood and have fun everyday.

“I swim and do a lot of competition swimming,” Kimora stated. “I also like reading, especially dystopian novels. I think I will be good at keeping up and making sure everything is balanced: sports, my social life and the classes.”

Her positive attitude towards life, her ability to be self-driven and have a strong work ethic, and her advanced academic knowledge are just a few of the components that encouraged her to branch out and immerse herself in this new experience.

“You can’t be scared to try new things, and you always have to try your best,” Kimora stated. “You never know where it is going to take you. You can’t be scared of the small thinking.”

Posted on August 11, 2017