College at 13: Young, Gifted, and Purposeful

College at 13: Young, Gifted, and Purposeful


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College at 13: Young, Gifted, and Purposeful by Razel Solow, Celeste Rhodes

What is it like to be 13 and going to college? Is such radical acceleration helpful or harmful? This book describes 14 highly gifted young women, now in their 30s, who left home to attend college at age 13 to 16, skipping all or most of high school. The authors describe what the women were like as young college students; the leadership, idealism, and sense of purposefulness they developed; and their lives 10 to 13 years later. This inspirational book will help educators and parents understand that gifted kids need academic challenge, that there are colleges with specific programs for such students, that it doesn't harm them to leave home early, and that keeping them interested in learning is vitally important.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780910707107
Publisher: Great Potential Press, Inc.
Publication date: 05/01/2012
Pages: 144
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 8.90(h) x 0.70(d)

Table of Contents

Acknowledgments xii

Foreword Rita Dove xvii

Preface xxi

In Her Own Words: Dr. Celeste Rhodes xxiii

In Her Own Words: Dr. Razel Solow xxvi

Introduction 1

PEG: A Brief History 1

The PEG Study 3

The PEG Mission and Goals 4

The Purpose of This Book 5

Part I Exceptionally Gifted Students and PEG 9

Chapter 1 Misconceptions about Gifted Students and Acceleration 11

Acceleration and Early Entrance 11

Misconceptions about Gifted Students 12

Social Responsibilities of the Gifted 17

Search for Meaning and Purpose 18

Chapter 2 Fourteen PEG Women: Then and Now 21

Table 1: Study Alumnae Information 23

The PEG Women 24

Claire Hagan 24

Darcy Maddox 25

Georgia Sullivan 25

Jessica Holmes 26

Julia Hix 27

Kristen Edwards 27

Liz Bennett 28

Lucy Jacobs 29

Madison Kennedy 29

May Crane 30

Nikita Escher 31

Nina Carpenter 31

Rachel Sinclair 32

Ruby Kelp 33

Part II Life Before PEG 35

Chapter 3 The Importance of Parental Support 37

The Holding Environment 38

Holding On 38

Letting Go 39

Remaining in Place 39

Encouragement and Expectations 40

The Importance of Living One's Own Dream 42

General Academic Expectations 43

Math and Science Guidance 44

When Support Is Limited 47

Ties to Purpose 52

Chapter 4 The Influence of Family Values 53

Parents and Family Friends as Role Models 53

Unconventionality and Skepticism 54

Independence and Trust 54

Hard Work and Self-Sacrifice 46

Expressiveness and Closeness 57

Values 57

Lifelong Learning and Education 57

Risk Taking 59

Resilience and Resourcefulness 60

Focus on Non-Materialism 61

Moral Development 63

Assuming Responsibility 64

Paying the Consequences 65

Serving the Community 66

Chapter 5 School Issues and the Struggle of Being Different 69

Feeling Different 69

Bullying 70

Coping in Middle and High School 72

Trying to Fit In 73

The Struggle to Be One's True Self 75

Social Development vs. Socialization 76

Anti-Intellectual School Settings 77

Teachers Who Made a Difference 78

Risks to Goals, Hope, and Empathy 80

Effects on Academics 81

Effects on Well-Being 82

Transforming Suffering 83

Part III Life During PEG 85

Chapter 6 Intellectual Development and Social-Emotional Needs 87

Leaving Dissatisfaction Behind 88

Building on the Foundation 89

Rekindling the Intellectual Spark 90

Promoting Authenticity and Community 90

Benefits of Single-Sex Education 90

Self-Concept and Fitting In 91

An Intellectual Peer Group 93

Commitment to Learning and Respect for Professors 94

Timely Academic and Artistic Opportunities 95

Attitude toward Learning 96

Leadership Skills 97

Spiraling Model of Purpose 99

Chapter 7 Caring Community, Social Self-Growth, and Moral Development 103

Caring Community 104

Guidance and Support 104

Resident Advisors, Administrators, Peers, and "Near Peers" 106

Mentors 107

Transfer of Trust and Receptivity to Adults 109

Building Strength and Courage to Face the Outside World 109

Growth of the Social Self 111

Finding True Peers 112

Social Flexibility and Diversity 114

Five Elements of Strong PEG Friendships 115

Postponing Serious Romantic Relationships 117

Self-Exploration, Self-Awareness, and Self-Reflection 118

Moral Development 119

Championing Moral Causes 120

Personal Moral Tests 121

Authentic Growth 121

Turning Points 123

Part IV Life After PEG 125

Chapter 8 Benefits of Early College Entrance 127

Young College Graduates 127

Being Academically Well-Prepared 129

Graduate School 130

Other Options: The Military 131

The World of Work 132

Establishing Credibility 132

Fighting Gender Constraints 134

Love of Work 135

Working toward the Future 136

Travel and Time to Explore 137

Starting Families 139

Characteristics of Successful Women 139

High Personal Standards 139

High Expectations of Others 140

Pushing Past the Comfort Zone 140

Dealing with Setbacks and Uncertainty 142

Self-Knowledge and Choice 142

A Sense of Accomplishment 143

Chapter 9 Community and Making a Difference 145

Selfless Service 147

Balancing Work, Personal Life, and Service 150

PEG and Purpose 151

Part V Case Studies of Five PEG Women 153

Chapter 10 Madison Kennedy: Parenting Excellence and Coping with ADHD 155

A Brief Biography 153

Loving Adoptive Parents 157

Academic Support 158

Emotional Support 159

Parental Expectations 160

Parental Values 161

Parent-Child Relationships 163

Coping with ADHD 164

Growing Up 164

ADHD "Happy Land" 166

Compensatory Strategies 166

Medical School 167

Behavior Issues 167

Learning Issues 167

New Compensatory Strategies 168

Residency 169

Finding Advantages in ADHD 169

Giftedness, Mastery, and Success 170

Conclusions 171

Chapter 11 Jessica Holmes: Beyond Fame, Fortune, and Stereotypes 173

A Brief Biography 174

Beyond Fame and Fortune 174

Values from Home: Responsibility and Service 174

The PEG Experience 175

Keys to Growth 177

Exposure and Discovery 177

Coping with Obstacles 177

Solidifying Personal Values 178

Taking Control 180

Bitter Lessons 180

Travel 181

From Difficulties to Delight 182

Conventional vs. Unconventional Definitions of Success 183

Managing Expectations 185

Living the Life She Wanted 186

Beyond Stereotypes 187

A Sense of Purpose 189

Conclusions 190

Chapter 12 Claire Hagan: Coping with Chronic Illness and Building Community 191

A Brief Biography 192

Intellectual and Personal Pursuits 193

Coping with Chronic Illness 194

A Life Transformed 194

The Coping Process: Five Components 196

Understanding the Medical Condition 197

Qualified Acceptance of Illness 197

Letting Go and Rediscovering the Self 198

Taking Control 199

Expanding in New Directions 201

Building Community 202

Intentionality 203

Democracy 203

Sustainability 204

Conclusions 205

Chapter 13 Lucy Jacobs: Grappling with Sexuality and Career Conflict 207

A Brief Biography 208

Grappling with Sexuality 209

Sexual Awareness: Realization, Not Choice 209

Struggle with Sexuality 209

Getting Help 209

Society's Moral Message 210

Acceptance of Sexuality 210

Activism and Sexual Identity 211

"Coming Out" to Family 212

Awareness, Understanding, and Empathy 213

Career Conflict 213

Matching Interests with Enthusiasm 214

Professional Stalling 214

The Conflict: Medicine vs. English and Education 215

Medicine 215

English and Education 216

Qualified Resolution 219

Becoming Whole 220

Motivation 220

Teaching as Purpose 221

Philosophy of Life 222

Conclusions 223

Chapter 14 Nina Carpenter: Creativity, Leadership, and the Struggle to Maintain Life Balance 225

A Brief Biography 226

Early Development of Creativity and Leadership 226

Outreach to Neglected Residents: The Mentally Ill 230

Outreach to Neglected Residents: African American Artists 231

Paring Back 232

A Hybrid Approach to Social Activism 233 Collaborative Regional Association for Fairness and Global Harmony (CRAFGH) 234

Social Activist as Social Entrepreneur 236

In Pursuit of Balance 237

Integrating Work and Purpose 239

Conclusions 241

Epilogue 243

Endnotes 251

References 265

About the Authors 273

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