Dorothy Tillman | Who Rocks! Next

DJ is Chicago's brightest scholar, at the tender age of 12, she's already received her bachelor's degree and is on to the next!


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The gifted and talent child prodigy, Dorothy Jean Tillman, a young Chicago student who has gone on to pursue her collegiate future at the early age of 12. She's a tech and arts enthusiast and community leader, who enjoys reading, painting and spending time with friends and family. According to ABC News 10, Tillman received her bachelor’s degree from Excelsior College on July 13.

So it's no surprise that Dorothy's mother Jimalita Tillman nicknamed her "Dorothy Jeanius." The young scholar has announced her plans to go for a master's degree in environmental engineering. And although, she won't be pursuing that plan to go for another diploma just yet, she has made it her duty to help encourage others to take interest in STEM and spend time traveling in the interim. 

“With environmental engineering, it’s all about helping people, the environment, and that’s just what I love to do, that’s what makes me happy,” she said. 

Jimalita Tillman took notice to her daughter’s passion for school when she started memorizing "double digits by four or three." Dorothy's mother made a significant effort to nurture her love for learning, so that she could grow into the scholar she is today. "In our culture, intellectualism is an academic achievement that has been diminished over time, and I think it’s incredibly important, particularly at a time when there are questions about the value of a higher education," her mother mentioned.

Before obtaining her first bachelor’s degree, Dorothy had already earned her associate’s degree. Dorothy's focus, hardwork and discipline paired with her volunteerism has been recognized by Wades World Foundation (Dwyane Wade), Social Works Chi (Chance the Rapper), and Project IAm, founded by child philanthropist Jahkil Jackson.

Dorothy Jean is also a member of Transformations Church, where she is a part of praise team, usher board, and youth ministry. Her faith has helped fuel her to stay focused and grounded in her social outreach, as she shares her experiences to inspire other young adults to pursue their dreams.

Jimalita is a firm believer that her daughter is one of the greatest to come out of Chicago, because she has overcome great odds to achieve her academic success.