Stephanie Mui doesn’t recall the specifics of the math problem presented to her fourth-grade class years ago. Regardless, it was so difficult, it stumped even her teacher. Not Mui, though.
“To solve it I remember I had to set up a system of algebraic equations and basically just solve them simultaneously,” said the 17-year-old from Fairfax, Virginia.
So, Mui is pretty sharp at math. Which makes sense. She has been working to master the subject since she was a little kid. According to Mui, she was learning addition and multiplication in preschool, and really, she just kept rolling. Mui proved to be so good at math that after fifth grade she started taking community college courses.
She didn’t stop there.
On Saturday, Mui will be the youngest among more than 8,700 graduates at George Mason University’s 50th commencement. She has earned a master’s degree in mathematics from Virginia’s largest public university, a milestone reached before she has even graduated from high school.
“To me, it’s just my life,” Mui said. “To others, it might look a little weird. But yeah, I just think it’s my life.”
Let’s not call it weird, though. Because sometimes people see the word “weird” and think it means “strange but like, in a bad way,” and The Washington Post does not want readers to think there is anything bad about being smart. Instead, let’s say that Mui’s path is remarkable, and even impressive.
“As a student she is sharp, very sharp. She impresses everyone,” Sean Lawton, an associate professor at George Mason who taught and mentored her. “As a human, she is mature, polite, observant, and careful. She works hard and does not give up.”
Lawton, director of the Mason Experimental Geometry Lab, met Mui a few years ago. At that point, he wrote in an email to The Post, Mui was “very …read more
Source:: The Denver Post