Melissa York, Reporter
Wednesday, January 30, 2013
An 11-year-old pupil graduated from a special programme at Oxford University after writing an essay about fairness.
Hamza-Yunus Islam, in Year Six at Essex Primary School, Manor Park, was selected to take part in the Newham Honours Programme for Gifted and Talented youngsters that saw him research, write, and present an essay with Oxbridge scholars.
Hamza-Yunus worked with PhD students for six weeks on an academic study entitled ‘What is fairness?’ where he attempted to explain the concept by citing examples and presenting his ideas alongside evidence he had gathered.
He was granted a 2:1 and attended a graduation at Oxford University.
Hamza-Yunus, who hopes to study medicine in the future, attributed his success to his parents, sisters and extended family.
He said: “I am lucky that I have a lot of support.”
The thrill of an intellectual challenge was not the only reason Hamza-Yunus wanted to visit Oxford University - he also got to see locations used to depict Hogwarts Castle in the Harry Potter films.
Hamza-Yunus, who is also a fan of chess and Manchester United, said: “I loved visiting Oxford University, especially as the Harry Potter films were shot there. I’m a huge fan.”
Proud mother Afia said: “Hamza-Yunus has been dedicated to this essay right from the start.
“We are extremely proud of his achievement and it is indeed a reflection of the superb support that he receives from his teachers.
“We hope that Hamza-Yunus can continue his progress and achieve his academic aspirations in the future.”
The scheme is supported by not-for-profit organisation The Brilliant Club who aim to widen access to top universities for outstanding students from disadvantaged backgrounds.