Harvard, Yale, Columbia, Dartmouth…many students dream of attending one of America’s elite schools, but Long Island, NY teen Harold Ekeh just pulled off the near impossible. Getting accepted to one of the nation’s most selective universities is difficult enough, but the Elmont High School senior won a spot at all eight Ivy League schools!
“Absolutely shocked. It was as though I was hit repeatedly. I was stunned,” Harold said in an interview.
Harold and his family emigrated from Nigeria to New York when he was eight years old to seek a better life, and his parents have preached the importance of education ever since.
“We had a fairly comfortable life in Nigeria, but they told me we moved to America for the opportunities like the educational opportunities,” he said.
It paid off. Harold—who is also the salutatorian of his class—was not only accepted to all eight Ivy League schools, but he’s been awarded scholarships too. He plans on studying either neurobiology or chemistry so he can become a neurosurgeon, a goal he made after his grandmother was diagnosed with Alzheimer’s when he was 11.
“When other kids would say, ‘I want to be a superhero or police officer,’ I would say, ‘I want to know what is on the inside of us,'” he said on Fox & Friends.
And he’s well on his way. Earlier this year Harold was a semifinalist in the Intel Science Talent Search for his research on how the acid DHA can slow Alzheimer’s.
While he’s an exceptional student, Harold is also well rounded. He plays the drums, directs the youth choir at his church, gives back to the community, and he speaks three languages—Igbo, Spanish, and English. Harold’s principal calls him “one of the most humble young men I’ve ever had the opportunity to meet,” and it shows.
“I am very humbled by this. I see this as not an accomplishment for me, but as an accomplishment for my school, my community,” Harold said, “Because I really see this as my mission to inspire the next generation.”
So far, Harold hasn’t decided which school he’ll attend in the fall, but he’s leaning toward Yale.
We wish him luck, although something tells us he doesn’t need it!