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14-year-old prodigy wins 'dream job' at Elon Musk's SpaceX

Kairan Quazi enrolled in community college at age of nine because third-grade was "not challenging enough"

By Web Desk
June 11, 2023
This picture shows, Kairan Quazi, 14, enjoying a book in his spare time. — Instagram/@thepythonkairan
This picture shows, Kairan Quazi, 14, enjoying a book in his spare time. — Instagram/@thepythonkairan

Age is really only a number when it comes to Kairan Quazi, who will soon become the youngest software engineer at Starlink and the youngest person to graduate from Santa Clara University’s School of Engineering.

According to the South China Morning Post, Kairan Quazi, a 14-year-old from Santa Clara, California, has been appointed as SpaceX's newest software engineer, becoming the space agency's youngest employee.

He said in a LinkedIn post on Thursday: "I will be joining the coolest company on the planet as a software engineer on the Starlink engineering team. One of the rare companies that did not use my age as an arbitrary and outdated proxy for maturity and ability."

The Los Angeles Times reported that Quazi had already begun speaking full sentences at the age of two, according to his parents. Later, in kindergarten, he would tell other kids and teachers about news stories he had heard on the radio.

His parents even enrolled him at a community college in California at the age of nine when his third-grade schoolwork did not seem challenging enough for him.

“I felt like I was learning at the level that I was meant to learn,” he told the LA Times.

His parents told BrainGain Magazine that the same year he enrolled in community college, he was placed in the 99.9th percentile of the general population on an IQ test.

This picture shows Kaira Quazi, Starlinks youngest recruit busy with work. — Instagram/@thepythonkairan
This picture shows Kaira Quazi, Starlink's youngest recruit busy with work. — Instagram/@thepythonkairan

Quazi was hired as an AI research co-op fellow at Intel Labs a few months later as part of an internship, and by the age of 11, he transferred to Santa Clara University to study computer science and engineering.

According to his LinkedIn page, he worked as a machine learning intern at the cyber intelligence company Blackbird.AI for four months last year.

According to his profile, he contributed to the creation of an "anomaly detection statistical learning pipeline" to indicate whether social media information has been altered.

Quazi told ABC7 News: "I think there’s a conventional mindset that I’m missing out on childhood, but I don’t think that’s true. I think, again, that mindset would have me graduating middle school now."

"It is my dream to have a career tackling challenging issues and effecting radical innovation in service of the common good," he wrote in his LinkedIn biography, underlining the achievement of one of his ambitions.

Quazi made his SpaceX job announcement before receiving his engineering degree from Santa Clara University, making him the youngest graduate ever, according to the Seattle Times.

Furthermore, he intends to relocate from Pleasanton, California, with his mother in order to begin working at SpaceX in Redmond, Washington.