Physics Prodigy PhD

While you have to force most teens to do their homework, this one wants a doctorate. Our 10X Kids spotlight this week is on Elliott Tanner — a 13- year-old physics prodigy who is on track for a PhD. 

Earlier this year, Tanner graduated from the University of Minnesota with a bachelor’s degree in physics with a minor in mathematics. This makes him one of the youngest college graduates in U.S. history.

In spite of his age, the graduate said college life was not as awkward for him as you would imagine. 

“There is sometimes a short period of confusion as to why I am there [in class], but that wears off quickly.”

— Elliott Tanner in an interview for Live Science

Tanner would hang out with his classmates in the student lounge, watch movies with them, and debate physics topics.

In short, he was like any other college student pursuing a future PhD — except he was a pre-teen physics prodigy. 

However, his science capabilities were apparent from a young age. 

Before the physics prodigy’s PhD dream: accelerated particles on the playground

According to his parents, as a child, Elliott was already discussing particle accelerating and advanced mathematics. They also said it was more common for him to buy books with birthday money than toys.

Tanner seemed to consume information quicker than his teachers and parents could provide it. As result, he was enrolled in the local community college at age nine. 

Naturally, Elliott Tanner’s achievements make his parents very proud. 

“While he has an amazing capacity to learn, he’s also a kind and funny human being. He inspires us to be better people everyday.”

— Elliott Tanner’s mother for Live Science

Finally, what is the subject that this physics prodigy wants a PhD in?

Elliot Tanner wants his doctorate in high energy theoretical physics. His ultimate goal is to become a Professor at the University of Minnesota where he graduated. 

We look forward to the innovation he’ll bring to his field.

Discover 10X Kids University for the tools, resources, and insights to help high-performing children achieve their biggest goals.

Featured image source: Elliott Tanner Official Website


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