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Aw! These Identical Twins Graduated as Co-Valedictorians: “I Was Glad It Was Both of Us”

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In today’s impressive and inspiring news, identical twin sisters Tia and Tyra Smith, 18, graduated as co-valedictorians of their Chicago high school with 4.0 GPAs! "I was glad it was both of us," Tyra said in an interview with Good Morning America. "We really worked together in order to be where we were. It was the last thing we could do together in school before we have to leave each other."

During their time at Lindblom Math and Science Academy in West Englewood, IL, Tia and Tyra took on full course loads of five AP classes each in a single school year, and they still found time to take part in two theater programs. The sisters also founded Lindblom’s first black history art gallery and have dedicated themselves to raising community awareness of kidney disease.

On top of their shared GPAs, Tia and Tyra both have a love for crocheting and theater, which they plan to carry with them to their respective universities in the Fall. "I think we’re successful because of ourselves and because we’ve worked together throughout all these years," Tia said in an interview with The Chicago Sun-Times. She revealed that the only day they’ve ever spent apart was in the Spring when she went to visit Duke University, where she will study theater and statistics. Tyra will be staying closer to home and attend Northwestern University, where she plans to study theater and economics.

While the sisters will be going their separate ways, they were able to deliver a combined graduation speech to their class of 295 students as one final project together before college. "Their achievement did not come as a surprise because we’ve been working with them at a very early age," said the twins’ mom, Lemi-Ola Erinkitola, an educator with her own tutoring practice called The Critical Thinking Child. "I was glad because they’re going to separate colleges and it put a nice, finishing touch on their years together academically. It was very, very emotional and goes beyond just the title. It was the fact they can share that platform together and a memory they can carry throughout their journeys in life."

Image Source: Courtesy of Lemi-Ola Erinkitola

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