24-Year Old Black Student Graduates With Two Degrees From Two Different Colleges… on the Same Day!
Cincinnati, OH — Darrell Landon Kelly, a 24-year old African American from Cincinnati, Ohio, has proven his #BlackExcellence after graduating with two advanced degrees — one Master’s degree and another law degree — on the same day but from two different colleges.
On Saturday, May 12, Kelly received an MBA from Xavier University’s Williams College of Business, as well as a law degree from the University of Cincinnati College of Law.
“Some kids do great. Some kids do wonderful. But when you go past great and get your master’s and turn into a lawyer, you do like the Bible says: exceedingly and abundantly… That’s where he went — exceedingly more than we ever asked for,” Richard Layson, a family friend, told WCPO.
His mother, Lisa Kelly, is very proud of what her son has accomplished and how she supported him and his older sister Jazmone, who is also excelling in medical school.
“I was born to five generations of love, and I passed that on to them. If he’s tall, it’s because he’s standing on tall shoulders. He’s big because of the village, because of the friendships. He grew up with love.”
Since grade school and high school, Kelly has been excelling both in academics and sports such as football, basketball, soccer, among others. He graduated from Walnut Hills High School at 16 and went on to the Mecca, Howard University, in 2014.
Definitely, excellence runs in their blood. His mother and his aunts all went to college and two of them have master’s degrees. His grandmother who went back to college earned her bachelor’s degree from Xavier at the age of 73.
Kelly initially heard of a program that would allow him to obtain two degrees at Howard. But he decided to go back to Cincinnati to save money where he attended the University of Cincinnati and Xavier.
Six months before the graduation, he knew that both programs would have the graduation ceremonies on the same day. But he is very much used to juggling multiple tasks. In fact, he had two part-time jobs before, one as a legal extern at Baker & Hostetler LLP and another as a graduate assistant at Xavier.
Kelly is more than grateful for the support his mother gave him.
“It’s time for me to stand and leave the nest… She’s instilled me with all these tools and has guided me for so long,” Kelly said.