12-Year-Old Prodigy Enrolled In College to Become NASA Engineer

Alena Wicker just graduated from high school with dreams of becoming an engineer and driving space rovers.

Talk about making your parents proud!

This 12-year-old prodigy has just graduated high school and will begin her undergraduate career at Arizona State University, where she will major in astronomical and planetary science and chemistry. 

“I just had a goal I wanted to get to,” Alena Wicker told 11Alive about her dreams of working at NASA as an engineer. “I always dreamed of being an engineer because throughout my life I liked the building.”

By the age of 16-years-old, Wicker will have graduated college and well on her way to working at NASA in no time. She expressed her interest in not only building space rovers similar to the one sent in Mars’ perseverance mission, but she plans on driving them, too.

“I’ll be driving in one of those future space mobiles by the time that I graduate college,” Wicker continued. “I’m just planning it all as I go. It doesn’t matter what your age or what you’re planning to do. Go for it, dream, then accomplish it.”

Her mother Daphne McQuarter is in full support of her 12-year-old genius’ dreams of changing the world through STEM at such a young age. “She just had a gift for numbers and Lego and science so I started nurturing that gift,” McQuarter said to 11Alive. McQuarter noted that Wicker expressed her interest in working for NASA at four years old and knew that her child was always gifted.

We’re rooting for you Alena and we can’t wait to see all the incredible things you do within the next four years – and beyond!

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