Nine-Year-Old Belgian Child Prodigy Laurent Simons Has Dropped Out Of University
So, it's fair to say that nine-year-old Laurent Simons is pretty smart.
In fact, he's so smart that - at his tender age - he's been studying towards an electrical engineering degree at the University of Eindhoven.
Hell, most of us couldn't get through an electrical engineering course as adults, let alone as a child.
However, now that he has been told by the educational institution that he'll be unable to meet his December 26 deadline for graduation - a date that would make him the only person ever to graduate from a university under the age of 10 - his parents have pulled him out.
Unfortunately for Laurent, the university told him that he still needs to complete too many exams before he can get his diploma. That would make it impossible for him to graduate this year.
They did offer him a graduation date in mid-2020, at which point he'd still be a 10-year-old with a university degree, which is impressive by anyone's standards, but his parents didn't fancy it.
His dad, Alexander Simons, told the Dutch media that he'd received criticism from the university for the amount of media coverage that his son has had on his journey through the education system.
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However, in an interview with De Volkskrant, he argued: "If a child can play football well, we all think the media attention is great. My son has a different talent. Why should he not be proud of that?"
An Instagram account in Laurent's name also recently shared a photograph that contained an email from Eindhoven University.
On that email, they'd offered him a selection of December graduation dates, but the account had captioned it: "Liar liar pants on fire!!!"
In their defence, Eindhoven's University of Technology released a statement in which they argued that it simply isn't feasible for Laurent to complete the course whilst sufficiently developing 'insight, creativity and critical analysis' before he turns 10 on Boxing Day.
They added that to rush him through the course in order to meet a deadline that - let's face it - is essentially arbitrary, could have an effect on his academic development as a whole.
The university was quick to warn against placing 'excessive pressure on this nine-year-old student' even though - as they then added - he possesses an 'unprecedented talent'.
Featured Image Credit: PA