Meet Thessalonika Arzu-Embry. To you she may look like a normal 16-year-old girl, but don’t let her looks fool you. Despite her incredibly young age, Thessalonika is actually studying for her doctorate! Yes, you read that correctly – her doctorate!
Thessalonika has led a very impressive life so far. Her accomplishments can be traced back to as early as six years of age, when she gave motivational speeches at Tabitha House Community Service, a shelter for victims of violence, abuse, and natural disasters.
I know what you’re thinking – How is she possibly going for her doctorate at the age of 16? Thessalonika has been home schooled since she was four years old. She was only 11 years old when she graduated from high school. By the age of 14, she had earned her bachelor’s degree in psychology. She then went on to earn her master’s degree.
At that point, it’s safe to say most adults (let alone teenagers) would sit back and be pretty impressed with their accomplishments. Well “sitting back” and relaxing is apparently the last thing on Thessalonika’s mind as she now plans on pursuing her doctorate at the age of 16.
She hopes to get her doctorate in Aviation Psychology, inspired by her dad who is a private pilot, veteran, and also works as a manager of O’Hare International Airport. Thessalonika hopes to use her education to help pilots cope with potentially dangerous situations in the air.
She may not be helping pilots yet, but Thessalonika is already helping a variety of other kinds of people. She has three self-published books, which can be found on her website. Jump the Education Barrier is a book she wrote to help students complete college. She also wrote In the Future (for businesses) and The Genius Race.
While doing so many awesome things, Thessalonika somehow makes time for hobbies as well. She loves to swim and play tennis. She also enjoys helping out at her church’s youth ministry. We can all agree that Thesalonika is not your average 16-year-old! We can’t wait to see what she continues to accomplish.
Something To Think About
If your teen isn’t pursuing her doctorate yet, that doesn’t mean she doesn’t dream about it. Many parents assume that if their teen is disinterested in their studies, it is because the work is too difficult for them. While that can certainly be true, so can the opposite. Sometimes teenagers are disengaged because the work is too easy for them.
It is helpful to communicate with your daughter and help ensure she is being challenged appropriately. Most schools offer honors classes or even dual enrollment for students who are ready for something more advanced than traditional classes.
Does your teen struggle at times because she is under-challenged? Share your thoughts on our Facebook page. We love hearing from you!