Chriag Shah breezed through his studies at the University of Illinois at Chicago in just a year and a half. And he got a 3.9 GPA on barely an hour a day of studying. The 19-year-old explained that college mostly seemed like a “review” from his days at Barrington High School, where he took so many advanced courses, he was able to start as a junior at UIC.
“I just had a lot of free time,” said Shah, who is jokingly referred to as “the brainiac” by friends. “I’d do different activities every day, spend a lot of time at the beach.”
Shah, a biology major, had been accepted at UIC’s advanced seven-year medical program when he first enrolled in college.
But because students in the rigorous track are required to wait at least three years before starting, Shah has to wait. So he’s keeping himself busy hanging out with pals, playing sports, attending rock concerts, and dancing the traditional Indian garba dance of his parents’ homeland.
And then there’s law school at John Marshall, where he’s a first-year student.
“At first, it was really intimidating because I was meeting people in my class who were 30, married or had kids,” Shah said. “But you get over it because you realize that you’re all in the same boat learning the same things.”
The teenager still wants to pursue a career in medicine, but he figures with a law degree, he’ll also be an expert in health and malpractice law.