Oakland Technical High School's 1st Black Male Valedictorian Accepted Into All 11 Universities He Applied To

As happy as Ahmed Muhammad is to become the first Black male valedictorian of his school, he also hopes that the accomplishment will help him support many generations of Black students aspiring to become valedictorian to come.

Not only is California teen Ahmed Muhammad making history at Oakland Technical High School as the first Black male valedictorian of his graduating class, he’s also facing the biggest decision of his life after he was accepted into all 11 colleges he applied to. Between Harvard, Stanford, Columbia, Princeton, Howard and several University of California locations, the 18-year-old told Inside Edition Digital that he hasn’t quite come to a decision as to where he’s choosing.

“I was thinking, maybe I can get into maybe one or two of these, and that's all that really matters, because you can only go to one college. But 11. That was crazy,” he said. “It'll be a tough decision for sure, but I can't go wrong with any of the schools.”

How the schools all ended up extending offer letters is no surprise. Ahmed scored 1540 on his SATs and earned 5s in eight out of nine AP courses he took. He also has a 4.78 GPA overall, and is slated to graduate with a 5.0 GPA in his senior year.

He also finished at the top of his class freshman and sophomore year, which is when the principal told him he was in consideration to become the first Black male valedictorian of his class if he kept his grades up.

“That’s big time,” Ahmed remembered thinking. “That's an award, an accomplishment that would be bigger than myself and would have an impact on kids that would come after me.”

He said his classmates have been congratulating him on the history-making milestone, but Ahmed explained that he’s more interested in what it will mean for all the students that come after him.

“It’s sad, honestly, I shouldn’t be the first in 2021,” he said. “I’m just glad we won’t have to have one of those firsts anymore. That we got that out of the way, so we can focus on the second, the third, the 10th, the 100th. I’m the first Black male valedictorian at my school but I won’t be the last.”

That’s why, in his spare time, he is dedicated to supporting other students along the way. Inspired by his own passions in science, Ahmed founded Kits Cubed, a do-it-yourself kit for young students to experience science hands-on. 

“The goal is for students to learn that science is all around us,” Ahmed explained. “You don't need to be in a lab super far away, just tucked off from the rest of the world, in order to do science. You can be a scientist in your backyard, in your kitchen, in your room.”

So far, the nonprofit has sold more than 6,000 kits around the country, and donated more than 3,000 to students in need in his school district.  

“This is my ‘me’ time,” he said. “I love science. And I love giving back to my community, especially since I'm only possible because of all the people that have come before me.”

Related Stories