15-year-old ASU student set to become the university’s youngest nursing grad yet

If all goes as planned, she'll graduate next August from Edson College at just 16. Field Trip Fridays is sponsored by Sanderson Ford
Published: Aug. 29, 2022 at 9:11 AM MST
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PHOENIX (3TV/CBS 5) -- Once again, Arizona State University is breaking records when it comes to student enrollment. More than 140,000 ASU students are starting a new semester and one standout student isn’t even old enough to drive!

“I’m 15,” ASU student Elliana Tenenbaum said. Tenenbaum is enrolled in an accelerated nursing program with ASU’s Edson College of Nursing and Health Innovation.

“Achievement-wise, Elliana is certainly on par with her peers. She’s very eager. She’s intelligent. She is engaged in classroom discussion,” said Erica Lee, director & professor with the Edson College. Lee says it’s clear Tenenbaum does her homework, and she’s used to doing a lot of it.

“I enrolled in a dual enrollment program in high school where I was able to take high school classes in addition to community college courses,” Tenenbaum said.

She started ASU in January, moving away from her California home right after she turned 15. “To me, it didn’t make sense to wait through all those four years of high school to get a jumpstart on learning,” Tenenbaum said.

If all goes as planned, she’ll graduate next August from Edson College at just 16, the same year she gets her driver’s license.

“I’ve learned a lot of great skills, and in the labs we have done a lot of assessments like abdominal, cardiac, respiratory,” Tenenbaum said.

She’s already planning her next move! Tenenbaum hopes to get a master’s degree in nursing after she finishes her bachelor’s. She hopes to be a nurse practitioner before she’s even an adult!

“We do really try to teach our students to think conceptually about the big picture about health outcomes. I think she’s going to be really well prepared and I can’t wait to see where she goes,” Lee said.

Tenenbaum is expected to become the youngest nursing grad ever at ASU, but she isn’t focused on that.

“Honestly, to me the title doesn’t mean as much as really helping people and getting the experience,” Tenenbaum said.