The first thing you’ll notice about Romanieo Golphin Jr. is that he is one freaking inspiring 8-year-old kid. The next thing will be that he is a lot smarter than you. We’re not talking "Are You Smarter Than a Fifth-Grader?" game-show clever—we’re talking off-the-charts genius. In fact, Romanieo has been dubbed “the next Einstein.”
The youngster been invited to NASA as a special guest to watch a rocket launch. He also appeared on "The Tonight Show" to explain the 2017 eclipse. He checked out the European Organization for Nuclear Research (CERN) which runs the Large Hadron Collider (the world’s biggest science experiment) in Switzerland. And he was recently featured on the TODAY show’s segment "Boys Changing the World," where he was interviewed by Savannah Guthrie at the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum.
Like most kids, he wants to be an astronaut. Unlike most kids, he probably will be an astronaut! He told Guthrie his main goal right now is to make a star—he had the idea when he was four—because no human being has done anything like that before. First, he’ll have to invent “a new physics.” Wow. Are you starting to feel like a total slacker yet?
Romanieo has never been enrolled in a public or private school. His father is an adviser for the music department at the University of North Carolina, while his mother, Cheri Philip, is a personality psychologist and serves as the research director for their educational consulting firm.
So, yes, Romanieo is home-schooled, but not like you might think. There are tons of field trips and the curriculum includes visiting art galleries, space centers, museums of natural history, and institutions of learning. “We focus on the creative genius in him,” says his father, Romanieo Sr. But is it all just facts, figures, numbers and equations? No. “The playground is essential for his development, and it’s essential for his mind.” The 8-year-old loves riding his scooter, sliding on slides, watching Netflix, exploring his iPad, and playing with Legos.
Kudos must be given to the Romanieo’s parents for fostering their child’s interests: he’s certainly a stellar example of why STEM education is so important across the country and why funding to it should not be cut. Romanieo, and kids like him, are our brightest hope for the future. (Unlike, some might say, the self-proclaimed “very stable genius” in the White House…)
Steven Goldfarb, an experimental physicist at CERN, says, “We have a lot of big questions, and we need an army of Romanieos to get prepared to help us to find answers in the coming decades.”
Romanieo’s parents are providing an education that no school could. The family has taken advantage of $1 million worth of free educational opportunities, online and otherwise. Despite the availability of free resources, Romanieo’s parents estimate a monthly household expenditure of as much as $1,000 to form a viable curriculum.
This is what it’s all about, fam. Let’s spread the word…We love stories about young men of color being given all the opportunities available to them, who are celebrated like they should be. SHARE this young man's story to empower others. #Each1Reach1 #YesWeCan