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9-year old Belgian boy Laurent Simons on track to become world's youngest university graduate

Updated : November 22, 2019 11:42 AM IST

As he cradles his young puppy in his arms, Laurent Simons looks much like any other 9-year-old boy. Then he starts describing his work at a university in the Netherlands, developing a computer circuit that will replicate a part of the brain.

"What we are doing is placing neurons and making connections to see what the reaction is to medication in a part of the brain," he says of the brain-on-chip project, which combines the biomedical and electrical engineering fields.

With an IQ of 145, the Belgian boy wonder is on track to become the world's youngest university graduate when he completes a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering at Eindhoven's University of Technology next month.

"I'm planning to start my PhD and study a little medicine, but before that vacation," he said of his post-graduation plans, as 9-week-old puppy Sammy dozed in his mother Lydia's arms.

Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, who studies electrical engineering and who will soon become the youngest university graduate in the world, talks with his professor Peter Baltus in a laboratory at the University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands November 20, 2019. Picture taken November 20, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, who studies electrical engineering and who will soon become the youngest university graduate in the world, talks with his professor Peter Baltus in a laboratory at the University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands November 20, 2019. Picture taken November 20, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman
When he's not at the university, Laurent says he walks the dog, plays video games Minecraft and Fortnite or posts pictures on Instagram. REUTERS/Yves Herman
When he's not at the university, Laurent says he walks the dog, plays video games Minecraft and Fortnite or posts pictures on Instagram.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, who studies electrical engineering and who will soon become the youngest university graduate in the world, talks with his professor Peter Baltus in a laboratory at the University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands November 20, 2019. Picture taken November 20, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, who studies electrical engineering and who will soon become the youngest university graduate in the world, talks with his professor Peter Baltus in a laboratory at the University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands November 20, 2019. Picture taken November 20, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, who studies electrical engineering and who will soon become the youngest university graduate in the world, talks with his professor Peter Baltus in a laboratory at the University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands November 20, 2019. Picture taken November 20, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, who studies electrical engineering and who will soon become the youngest university graduate in the world, talks with his professor Peter Baltus in a laboratory at the University of Technology in Eindhoven, Netherlands November 20, 2019. Picture taken November 20, 2019. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Offers are flooding in from universities around the world and Laurent's parents are helping him weigh the options, with the U.S. west coast currently a favourite destination. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Offers are flooding in from universities around the world and Laurent's parents are helping him weigh the options, with the U.S. west coast currently a favourite destination.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
Inspired by Serbian-American inventor Nikola Tesla, he plans to research artificial organs, and ultimately develop an entire artificial body in his own laboratory.
Inspired by Serbian-American inventor Nikola Tesla, he plans to research artificial organs, and ultimately develop an entire artificial body in his own laboratory. "My grandparents are heart patients," he explained of the choice.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
"Every professor is really enthusiastic about having Laurent and for us it's a unique situation of course because he's the youngest student we've ever had," said programme director Sjoerd Hulshof.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
After completing high school in roughly a year, Laurent - born in Belgium but now living in the Netherlands - started university and is set to finish the three-year bachelor's programme in just nine months. REUTERS/Yves Herman
After completing high school in roughly a year, Laurent - born in Belgium but now living in the Netherlands - started university and is set to finish the three-year bachelor's programme in just nine months.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
"I'm planning to start my PhD and study a little medicine, but before that vacation," he said of his post-graduation plans, as 9-week-old puppy Sammy dozed in his mother Lydia's arms.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, With an IQ of 145, the Belgian boy wonder is on track to become the world's youngest university graduate when he completes a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering at Eindhoven's University of Technology next month. REUTERS/Yves Herman
Nine-year-old Belgian student Laurent Simons, With an IQ of 145, the Belgian boy wonder is on track to become the world's youngest university graduate when he completes a bachelor's degree in electrical engineering at Eindhoven's University of Technology next month.
REUTERS/Yves Herman
Published : November 22, 2019 11:42 AM IST
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