At 15, he’s about to become UNLV’s youngest graduate ever

Local News

LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — UNLV is about to award its youngest graduate a bachelor’s degree.

It’s a title his mother can’t stop smiling about.

Jack Rico will be finishing up college in the next two weeks. He’s only 15.

“It’s hard to believe, but it’s nice to finish this long journey,” Jack said.

It’s an incredible accomplishment for a 15-year-old who recently picked up his cap and gown.

He said he did it by setting small goals.

“I was struggling in the 3rd grade and I asked my mom for help. We looked into homeschooling and it was a good experience,” Jack said.

He quickly surpassed all expectations, according to his mom.

“This was never the plan, but he said, ‘Mom, we will learn it together,’ ” said his mother, Ru Andrade. “That was really cool, learning his interests. And that’s what kept him motivated.”

The Southern California native skipped junior and high school and jumped into junior college. He graduated at 13 and transferred to UNLV. The family commuted between states for the two-year history program, which he completed a semester early.

“History is something I’ve always been interested in … looking at the past and how we reflect on that,” Jack said.

An achievement reached ahead of so many while he juggles his moments of being a kid, playing video games and hanging out with his friends.

“I don’t know what’s next. I know I want to continue my education and get my master’s,” he said.

As if getting your college degree at 15 wasn’t enough, he’s graduating with honors and he reached out to the Labor Department because he wants to work.

His mom said that work permit was approved, but she keeps reminding him to enjoy himself.

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