An exceptional 13 -year -old girl named Alena Analeigh McQuarter has made history as the youngest-ever person to be accepted into Medical School in the United States. She also bagged two degrees from two universities.
Alena McQuarter is a teen from Texas who started taking high school courses at the young age of 11 and was enrolled in two colleges at 12 years old to earn two separate degrees. She had enrolled in college even before she graduated high school.
Alena shared her Medical School acceptance via a reel posted on her Instagram page. She mentioned that she worked so hard to be where she is and she is nothing but proud of how her hard work resulted in success.
”Today I’m just grateful. I graduated High school LAST YEAR at 12 years old and here I am one year later I’ve been accepted into Med School at 13. I’m a junior in college. I’ve worked so hard to reach my goals and live my dreams,” she said.
Alena is currently a junior in college, attending both Arizona State University and Oakwood University for a Biological Sciences degree at the same time online.
Speaking on why she applied to Medical School, Alena said she was encouraged by her family and teachers to try it out based on her ability. She applied for early acceptance to medical school at the University of Alabama’s Heersink School of Medicine for 2024 and was accepted.
”What is age? You’re not too young to do anything. I feel like I have proven to myself that I can do anything that I put my heart and mind to,” she said.
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Alena was accepted into the University of Alabama Medical School even though she is more than 10 years younger than the average incoming medical student. Though the chances of Alena being accepted were slim as a black student and because of age, she was accepted based on her exceptional academic abilities.
Alena said she has always been interested in STEM(Science, Engineering, and Mathematics) since she was a little girl. Her passion for the STEM field earned her an internship at the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) for 11 years.
She made history as the youngest intern of the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. While an intern at NASA, Alena worked on various assignments including remote research for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in La Cañada Flintridge, California.
Alena expressed her gratitude to her mother for believing in her, and also for her support and guidance ever since she found out about her potential.
”Mama, I made it. I couldn’t have done it without you, you gave me every opportunity possible to be successful. You cheered me on, wiped my tears, gave me Oreos when I needed comfort, younever allowed me to settle, disciplined me when I needed, you are the best mother a kid could ever ask for. MAMA, I MADE IT,” she said.
Alena’s mother, Daphne McQuarter said she has always been gifted since she was a toddler. ”Even as a toddler, Alena was gifted, It was just how she did things and how advanced she was. She was reading chapter books, Daphne Mcquarter said.
Daphne added that Alena was bullied in high school for being too smart, that was when she decided to homeschool her which she did for several years. She said Alena returned back to normal schooling in fifth grade where she continued her advanced high school-level courses through a curriculum created by her.
Alena said she wants to grow up and be able to help and uplift other people around her. She added that the best way for her to accomplish her goal to help others professionally is through a medical profession and that was why she chose to become a Medical doctor.
She said she aims to become a Medical Doctor by the time she turns 18. Alena has earned several awards throughout her young life including being a finalist for Time’s Top Kid of the Year 2022 award.
“When I took my first biological class, I knew at that moment that this is what I’m supposed to be doing,” she said. “A big part of what I want to do is viral immunology, and I want to advocate for underrepresented communities that lack health care. It’s something that I’ve become passionate about,” she said.
Aside from being a student, Alena is the founder of the ‘Brown STEM Girl’ , an organization that inspires and give scholarships to young girls of color pursuing STEM. “It feels amazing to be able to create a path for girls that look like me, It doesn’t matter how old you are. You can do it. Don’t let anybody tell you no,” Alena said.
“I would say to any little girl out there that’s reading this: Never give up on you, never let someone tell you that you can’t do something,” she added.