OAKLAND (KPIX 5) — A senior at Oakland Technical High School is making history as the school’s first African American male valedictorian, while being accepted to some of the most prestigious universities in the country.
Ahmed Muhammad is a trailblazer – a straight-A student with an impressive 4.7 GPA. His selection of the school’s first Black male valedictorian was still a shock.READ MORE: Looming La Niña May Push Western Drought From Bad to Worse
“I was definitely shocked when I found out. This school is more than a hundred years old — in the middle of Oakland,” said Muhammad. “So, I’m really surprised that there hasn’t been a Black male valedictorian before.”
He’s been accepted to all eleven universities he applied to including Harvard, Princeton, Stanford, Columbia, USC, Cal and Howard.
“I would have been happy to get accepted into just one of them because you know you can only go to one school. But eleven of them — that’s pretty cool,” said Muhammad.READ MORE: Update: Fawn Fire Near Redding Grows To 7,500 Acres Overnight; Firefighters Look To Cooler Weather
The senior who also plays on the school’s basketball team says he hasn’t made up his mind about which school he’ll attend next year. He wants to study engineering after cycling through a number of possible professions when he was growing up.
“The first thing that I ever wanted to be was an archeologist and a paleontologist. Like I wanted to dig up dinosaur bones,” he said. “Then I wanted to be an astronaut and go to the moon. Then I wanted to be a surgeon. And now I say I want to be an engineer.”
Ahmed is not just smart and studious, he’s also charitable. During the pandemic, he founded a non-profit called Kits Cubed. Its goal is to get kids excited about science. He’s sold or donated more than 10,000 kits, each equipped with three science projects or experiments of his design.
Ahmed credits his parents with instilling a love of learning and setting high expectations for him.MORE NEWS: Air Quality Advisory Extended Through Monday Due To Wildfire Smoke
“I wouldn’t say they expect all this from me,” he said. “But they expect me to do great things. And they expect me to believe I can be great in my life.”