The Sacramento child prodigy plans to pursue a bachelor’s degree in music.
Thirteen-year-old Indian American child genius and musical prodigy Tiara Abraham, who graduated from high school with a 4.0 GPA last month, will start her college journey as a full-time student next month.
The wunderkind, who already has several college credit courses under her belt, is joining American River College, where she will take five courses, with a course load of 16 units. It is the same college from where her brother Tanishq Abraham graduated at the age 11, in 2015, with three degrees.
After finishing her first and second year bachelor’s degree requirements, the Sacramento teenager will transfer to a university, where she will start her third year, following the footsteps of Tanishq, who chose a similar path to college education.
“[I am] very excited to be a high school graduate at 13!” she told the American Bazaar. “”Usually it’s my mom who wakes me up to get ready for campus, but that day, dad also joined and with my eyes barely open, I could hear them saying, we have a surprise for you. It was awesome news!”
RELATED: Indian American child prodigy Tiara Abraham, 10, releases debut album (December 17, 2016)
Tiara, who became a member of MENSA, an organization of high IQ individuals, at the age of 4, was homeschooled for much of her school life after she found that school was not fun and challenging enough.
Like her brother, Tiara could have graduated from high school “very early — around 11, but she was “held back due to the bureaucracies” and “medical emergencies” within the family, said her mother Taji Abraham, a veterinarian and researcher who gave up her career to home school both her children.
The mom said the high school from where Tiara was enrolled repeatedly tried to hold her back, even though she was doing college-level English and science classes. “It was frustrating for Tiara and us, holding her back for no reason,” Taji said. “She was held back for two years. So finally we decided to pull her out and go with a state certified private school so that she can write her high school exam and graduate high school. We went through this similar situation with Tanishq also.”
Tiara wrote the state-administered high school exam in October.
“A couple of days before the results were officially announced, Taji had this intuition about the results being online and asked me to check it,” said dad Bijou Abraham, a software engineer. “We were so happy to see that Tiara had passed all her exams in one try and in a very short amount of preparation.”
Tiara, who has performed at iconic Carnegie Hall in New York City, said she wants to obtain a bachelor’s degree in vocal performance and eventually earn a doctorate in music.
While her artistic career and major choices differ from the rest of her family, her parents are more than supportive of their daughter.
Tiara, who comes from a lineage of scientists, doctors, and engineers, said “My parents did not force or advise me to follow the science route. Instead, they supported my passion for music and singing and I am glad they did.”
A passion that was realized early on.
Tiara loved to sing as a kid and had a natural vibrato, which she exhibited at the age of six, according to her parents. Upon realizing her talent and potential, the Abrahams signed her up for private vocal lessons at the age of seven.
This was also the age at which she began taking her first on-campus college class. While most seven-year-olds usually begin second or third grade, Tiara was balancing a college course, vocal lessons, and homeschooling.
With her talent for diction, Tiara began to sing German, Italian, Spanish, Latin and French arias, art and sacred songs with ease and perfect accents. As with many highly gifted students, Tiara had a curiosity about the foreign texts, and to better understand the classical repertoire and emote it, she enrolled in a foreign language course at a local community college.
Though college faculty and staff were initially skeptical about a seven-year-old in college, they were impressed as to how well adjusted she was, with her patience and attention span to sit through three-hour long classes, as well as her maturity and academic performance.
With a 4.0 college GPA, Tiara was invited to be a member of the college honor society, Phi Theta Kappa when she was 9. She became its youngest member then, along with Tanishq, who also joined Phi Theta Kappa at 9.
Tanishq, a child genius himself, made headlines when he enrolled in college at the tender age of nine. Now 16, Tanishq is a sophomore PhD student at UC Davis, studying biomedical engineering.
Even though, Tiara is academically gifted in math, sciences and arts, by the time she was 10, she decided to pursue music and while being homeschooled, she continued to take college transfer coursework and kept up with her vocal performances at national and international concerts and events.
She released her debut album Winter Nightingale in 2016, at the age of 10. The album contains her renditions of nine classic carols and rare holiday songs, sung in English, Spanish, Italian, German, Latin and French.
Recently, the child prodigy won the Premio Internazionale Giuseppe Sciacca Musica Award at Vatican. The places she performed include the Carnegie Hall; Musikverein in Vienna, Austria; and the San Francisco Giants stadium, where she sang the US national anthem twice — all before even being eligible to get a driver’s license.
Tiara had advice for other high schoolers and aspiring college students: “Take up a field that interests you, if it is math, law, biomedical engineering, languages, art or even music, but work hard and success will follow. My advice to parents out there: Please support your child in his or her strengths, not everyone can be a doctor, engineer or lawyer. The world needs more singers and musicians too, because life without music will Bflat.”
Taji Abraham said she and her husband are proud of the accomplishment of their daughter. “As parents, we know that we have another highly academically gifted and talented child but the world has known her as Tanishq’s younger sister,” she said. “We are happy that she will also leave a mark in this world and will inspire others. What more can a parent want, to be known as Tiara and Tanishq’s parent.”