Limitations are only in the mind and for this young scholar, the saying holds true ?%.
British born Nigerian Joshua Beckford at the age of six, emerged the youngest person with autism to be accepted to Oxford University. He studied philosophy and history and graduated with distinctions in all courses he studied by age 14.
2017 NDA winner Beckford who nurses dreams of becoming a neurosurgeon was also listed in the top 30 most remarkable people in the world with Autism who have impacted society.
An extraordinary kid: At just 10 months old, Beckford’s father, Knox Daniel, discovered his son’s unique learning capability while he was sitting on his lap in front of the computer.
With focus on the keyboard being his interest, Daniel recalls : “I started telling [Joshua] what the letters on the keyboard were and I realized that he was remembering and could understand.”
“So, if I told him to point to a letter, he could do it… Then we moved on to colours,” Daniel added.
At the age of three, Beckford could read fluently using phonics. He learned to speak Japanese and even taught himself to touch-type on a computer before he could learn to write.
“Since the age of four, I was on my dad’s laptop and it had a body simulator where I would pull out organs,” said Beckford.
In 2011, his father became aware of a programme at Oxford University that was specific aimed at children between the age of eight and thirteen.
To challenge his son, Knox Daniel wrote to Oxford with the hopes of getting admission for his child even though he was younger than the age prescribed for the programme.
Fortunately, Beckford was given the chance to enrol. He became the youngest student ever accepted.
The brilliant chap took a course in philosophy and history and passed both with distinction.
But his brilliance shown, Beckford was too advanced for a standard curriculum; hence he was home-schooled, according to Spectacular Magazine.
Joshua who has always held keen interest in the affairs of Egypt throughout his studies, the young prodigy is working on a children’s book about the historic and ancient nation.
Beckford serves as the face of the National Autistic Society’s Black and Minority campaign, there he helps highlight the challenges minority groups face in their attempt to acquire autism support and services
Joshua Beckford’s list of accolades also includes being appointed Low Income Families Education (L.I.F.E) Support Ambassador for Boys Mentoring Advocacy Network in Nigeria, Uganda, Ghana, South Africa, Kenya and the United Kingdom.
Joshua who holds dreams of becoming a neurosurgeon has already performed operations with competence including the removal of a cataract, according to reports.
Joshua Beckford has also won many awards including a Positive Role Model of the Year. His heart set on low income families in Africa the young achiever is working on a project to build a school for children in Kaduna Nigeria which has been plagued by insurgency and poverty.
Well done Joshua!