They don't make bumper stickers for scholastic achievers such as 13-year-old David Dalrymple of the University of Maryland, Baltimore County.
Most signage lauding kids his age is for middle school honor rolls or student-of-the-month awards, enabling parents to boast about such accomplishments on cars or refrigerators.
If David's parents had such a sticker, it would read: "Our kid graduated from college with two degrees as a teenager."
The Columbia resident entered UMBC as its youngest student ever three years ago. Today, he will graduate with degrees in math and computer science.
David is one of five members of UMBC's Young Scholars Community who will graduate this year before turning 20.
The school began the Young Scholars Community in 2000 to assist early entrants' assimilation into college while encouraging them to set goals beyond earning a degree at an accelerated pace.
David, the youngest Young Scholar ever, began reading at 18 months and tested at high school level in all subjects at 7.
He has accomplished more before legal-driving age than many people do afterward. He has made technology presentations at Microsoft and the Smithsonian Institution and spent a semester at sea and earned $6,000 selling travel photographs online.
"Since I was 2, I have wanted to be an inventor with my own business," said David, who will work as a consultant for a year then enroll in graduate school.
Though he considered other schools, he said, "I went to UMBC mainly because it is close and I wasn't old enough to move out of town on my own, so rather than have the whole family move, this seemed the place to go."
What he found was an environment conducive to early entrants.
The other early graduates include: 19-year-old valedictorian Aaron Ralby, an English and modern languages and linguistics major from Owings Mills, who will study at Cambridge this year before attending Cornell on full scholarship; Erin Loeliger, 19, a biochemistry major from Essex who will enroll in an M.D./Ph.D. program at Harvard Medical School in the fall; and Jason Moser, 19, a mathematics major from Lutherville will attend graduate school at the University of Maryland. Noel Mueller, 19, is a graphics major from Joppa, who graduated in December.
Since its inception in 2000, the UMBC Young Scholars Community has averaged about a dozen students, most of whom enroll before their 14th birthday and graduate by age 18.
This year, the group fielded 16 students.
Freeman A. Hrabowski, UMBC president, said the record number of Young Scholars "says that we're finding more and more children and families who have an interest in getting their sons and daughters more opportunities for advanced study at an early age."
While most accelerated learners gravitate to such subjects as math, physics and computer science, UMBC has produced majors in philosophy, languages and women's studies.
UMBC also is becoming a haven for young, high-achieving siblings.
Ralby's brother Ian, a former Young Scholar, graduated as a valedictorian in 2002, marking the first sibling valedictorians in school history. Meanwhile Loeliger's sister Kelsey, 16, is a sophomore at UMBC.
Most of the students enter college without many experiences of those who take a traditional high school track.
And though they've often battled misconceptions about home-schooled children and young achievers, they see little difference between them and other collegians.
Erin Loeliger, who was home schooled said, "The first thing I heard from everyone when I arrived was that I didn't get to go to a prom, but then about half of the students said, `I didn't go to my prom either.'
At a time when emotional and social development are critical for all students, Young Scholars are encouraged to establish relationships with faculty and develop mentors.
"UMBC is a really friendly environment that is open to new things and new approaches rather than the traditional tracts," said Erin Loeliger. "I believe Dr. Hrabowski has a perspective on that."
That's because Hrabowski is also an accelerated learner, having graduated from Hampton University with a degree in mathematics at 19.
"I have studied the issue of children going through school fast and needing more intellectual stimulation in a society that doesn't always celebrate gifted children," said Hrabowski.
"We want these students to know that they can be comfortable in an environment of higher achievers that respects them as good thinkers," he said.