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Shania Muhammad, a trailblazing young scholar from Oklahoma and an HBCU graduate, has become the youngest full-time salaried teacher in the nation at just 16 years old.
For the last few years Muhammad has lit up national news with her accomplishments. At 14, before even obtaining her driver’s license, she became the youngest person in Oklahoma to graduate college with two degrees. With support from her father, Shania obtained an associate degree from Oklahoma City Community College and another from Langston University, the state’s only Historically Black College.
A year later, she became the youngest person to ever graduate from Langston with a bachelor’s degree in Family and Consumer Sciences-Child Development.
Now, even as she’s the youngest African American graduate student pursuing a master’s in Business Administration, Shania is already in the classroom teaching the next generation of third graders.
I’m Super Proud Of My Daughter For Being Bold And Brave and Stepping Out On Her Faith and Into Her Purpose and Not Allowing Peoples Opinions Of Her To Dictate The Reality of Her Dreams and Passions,” her father Elijah Muhammad Sr. wrote on Facebook.
Youngest full-time teacher changing the lives of third graders
According to her father, Shania Muhammad earned two years of National Teachers Professional Development Training through the Thurgood Marshall Foundation. Last year she spent two weeks training in Houston, and this year she gained another two weeks of training under her belt in Washington, D.C.
“I actually experienced and enjoyed Langston. It felt like I was at home from home. I don’t feel judged, it’s like we understood where we came from,” Shania once said about her time learning at an HBCU.
According to a study from the National Center for Education Statistics, Black girls and women are among the highest educated groups in the nation. On top of her passion for learning, Shania Muhammad has also ventured into entrepreneurship. The youngest teacher in the nation already has a clothing line.
Meanwhile, her little brother isn’t too far behind. Elijah Jr. recently became the youngest college graduate in the nation at just 13 years old. He graduated from OCCC in May with a science and cybersecurity degree, according to Good Morning America.
“I don’t have problems making friends, I’m really sociable, it’s just, when I tell them, or they ask me, what’s going on, and I tell them, you can do the same thing if you take the time to focus and study on the things you really want to do,” Elijah previously said.
Meanwhile, their father credits their success to being hands-on, creative and flexible with their education.
“We try to expose you to as many different types of learning and different types of learning styles. Some people are hands-on, some people learn by video, audio or reading. There are multiple methods, and I’m saying, why are we being told there’s only one way,” Muhammad Sr. said.