Speed Reads

It wasn't all bad

17-year-old earns master's degree before graduating from high school

After conquering algebra in kindergarten and geometry in the second grade, Stephanie Mui, 17, earned multiple college degrees — all before receiving her high school diploma.

The Virginia resident learned the basics through flash cards, and by the time she was in fifth grade, she had signed up for community college courses. After earning her associate's degree, she went to George Mason University, where she received her bachelor's of science in math, and this weekend, she was awarded a master's degree, also in mathematics. "Her incredible poise and demeanor and intellect are all balanced," Tracy Dean, assistant dean of the George Mason University College of Science, told NBC Washington. "She is extremely bright, knows what she wants, and is really fearless."

Throughout her college career, Mui was also still enrolled in high school, and she will graduate in June. Her plan is to go to New York University for her Ph.D., but not before a summer filled with movies and swimming with friends. While graduating from college three times before finishing high school may seem incredible, "it's just life to me," Mui said. "Everybody else may see it as weird. But, you know, it's just life." Catherine Garcia