11-year-old graduates from college, aims to be astrophysicist

Boy had learned algebra by age 4

By AMANDA JACKSON, CNN
Bay News 9 via CNN

(CNN) - He can't vote. He's not even old enough to drive. But William Maillis already has a college degree.

William, 11, walked across a stage Saturday to receive his Associate in Arts degree from St. Petersburg College in Florida.

"I am totally fascinated by William and the work that he has done," Dr. Tonjua Williams, president of St. Petersburg College, told CNN affiliate Bay News 9. "He's extremely brilliant, very open and collaborative."

William started college in 2016 after graduating high school at age of 9. His parents say he was always on the "fast track." By the age of 2 he was doing simple math and by 4 he learned algebra.

"Everybody has gifts from God. I was gifted with knowledge and science and history," William told CNN affiliate WFTS.

So what's next? He plans to continue his education and will begin classes next month at the University of South Florida.

"I want to be an astrophysicist," William told CNN affiliate Bay News 9. "I want to prove to the world that God does exist through science."

His goal is to complete his doctorate by the time he's 18 -- the age many people are when they begin college.

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