Expatica news

Super-intelligent girl, 12, set for university

28 April 2004

AMSTERDAM — When Floor Sietsma starts university after the summer holidays she will not only be the youngest college student in the Netherlands. The 12-year-old will also be one of the most intelligent: European IQ test scores go up to 156 points – her IQ is even higher.

Sietsma has completed pre-university WVO education studies in one year and is to sit the written exams next month. The WVO normally takes up to six years.

Assuming she gets her diploma, she told newspaper Algemeen Dagblad she will go on to study mathematics and computer science at the University of Amsterdam later this year.

Asked why she had elected to study two subjects at university, she replied: “at least it will give me something to do.”

The Amsterdam girl’s path from primary school to university has not been easy. She has suffered a lot of bullying and teasing from children her own age.

“I did not wear branded clothing, was hopeless in the gym and was also very intelligent,” she told the newspaper. “The bullying was so bad that I became very depressed and life meant nothing to me.”

When she moved on to secondary education the bullying eased off but she was still an outsider among her peers.  She attends a specialist homework unit for intelligent children, Smart Kids, three times a week.

Some experts are worried a university is not the right environment for such a young girl, but Sietsma says she will receive extra guidance from other students and professors, and will be glad to be rid of the bullies from primary school.

[Copyright Expatica News 2004]

Subject: Dutch news