By Chung Ah-young
An 18-year-old American prodigy was appointed as a full-time professor by Konkuk University, becoming the youngest professor in world history, the school said Tuesday.
Alia Sabur broke the record by Colin Maclaurin who became a professor of mathematics at the age of 19 at Marischal College, Aberdeen, Scotland in 1717, according to the Guinness Book of World Records.
Sabur will teach cell science to students of the Graduate School Department of Advanced Technology Fusion at the university in Seoul, the school said.
She will start researching and give special lectures at the university from next month and will begin her official courses for the graduate school in September.
``It's really exciting and it's also a challenge because, obviously, when you get awards and recognition for being so young ― you have to live up to the expectations, and I do hope I can do that,'' Sabur was quoted as saying from Louisiana, where she was teaching at the Southern University at New Orleans as part of relief efforts for Hurricane Katrina victims, according to Yonhap News Agency.
Sabur entered Stony Brook University in 1999 at the age of 10 and graduated from the school in 2003 with a degree in applied mathematics.
Konkuk said that Sabur applied for the university's professor recruitment in the United States last year. The school said that it has made a one-year contract with her as her research achievement was superb and she is expected to inspire students who are a similar age.
She earned her M.S. and Ph.D. (ABD) in materials science and engineering at Drexel University.
Sabur also has musical talent by making her clarinet debut at the age of 11 and training at the Juilliard School.