Education

Student who started as a 12-year-old is youngest ever to graduate from University of Leicester

First-class degree for Yasha Asley, who turned 15 last month, and will now go on to study for a PhD in the Department of Mathematics

Issued by University of Leicester Press Office on 13 July 2017 
A remarkable student, who just turned 15 last month, has gained a first-class Honours BSc degree in Mathematics from the University of Leicester.

Yasha Asley was only 12 when he embarked upon the three-year undergraduate degree.  This week, he joined some 3,500 graduates of the University of Leicester to become the youngest graduate in the University’s history.
Yasha said: “Right from my primary school days I wanted to start my university education early. I love absolutely everything about mathematics and I would like to continue studying. All my lecturers have been fantastic and in particular I would like to give special thanks to Professor Alexander Gorban, Professor Ivan Tyukin, Professor Alexander Clark and Professor Jeremy Levesley.
“I had a great time studying at the University and the staff and students were friendly. Studying at the University of Leicester was a great experience and I learnt how to work with people much older than myself and this has improved my communication and interaction with others. I was overjoyed when every year I was awarded the certificate for the best student in the year after I scored the highest exam marks.
“Now, at 15 years old, I finished my degree course when children of my age are doing their GCSEs and I am grateful for the opportunity that was created for me. Overall I will have great memories to look back on.  I look forward to continuing my education here at Leicester by embarking on a PhD in Mathematics in September.
“Eventually, I would like to become a research mathematician here so that I can continue to enjoy my love of mathematics.”
Speaking about his graduation, Yasha said: “At first I was quite nervous and also quite excited. It was a mixture of emotions- but mostly happy. I walked across the stage and appreciated the cheers.
Yasha’s father, Moussa, who accompanied his son for the ceremony, said: “I am so proud of him- I have waited 14 years for this day. I always knew he could do it.”
Professor Jeremy Levesley, who taught Yasha, said: “It has been a great pleasure to work with Yasha over the last three years. He has integrated really well with the other students, and if I had not known he was younger I would not have guessed. He has proven to be one of the best students we have ever had here, so it is great that he is staying with us to do a PhD. On a personal note, I think he is a great bloke, and will go on to do really interesting things.”
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