LOUISVILLE, Ky. — One Louisville teen has made history yet again. 

What You Need To Know

  • At just 18 years old, Carmen Ellison has graduated from the University of Louisville

  • She graduated from Seneca High School when she was 15

  • Ellison plans to attend law school in the fall

  • Her younger brother, Sinceer, is president of his senior class at Eastern High School 

Three years ago, Carmen Ellison was 15 and one of the youngest students ever to graduate from Jefferson County Public Schools (JCPS). At the time, she said she wanted to do something "big."

Not satisfied with being one of the youngest JCPS graduates ever, Ellison is now one of the youngest University of Louisville alumni. She graduated in just two-and-a-half years. 

"Mainly, it was me taking a larger course load because I had a goal, and I was really determined to reach that goal," she said. 

Ellison completed high school and college in fewer than five years. Her college commencement was held in December at the KFC Yum! Center, where her mother and extended family attended.

“The KFC Yum! Center is so big, and I was screaming because I was so excited," said Felicia Bowman, Ellison's mother. "I mean, she is a first-generation college student." 

Ellison and her mother, Felicia Bowman (Spectrum News 1/Jonathon Gregg)

With a degree in political science, Ellison said she hopes to attend law school in the fall, but finding a job has been tough. 

“I believe because I am so young, people aren’t really open to put trust in me because of my age," she said. "You have to know me. I am a very determined person."

During any challenging time, Ellison leans on her parents for support.


"It flew by really fast; I was surprised," said John Ellison, her father. "She accomplished more than people I work with, and I'm just really amazed and proud of her." 

Ellison's younger brother is also making strides in school. Sinceer Ellison, 17, is president of his senior class at Eastern High School, was voted Homecoming King this past fall and is a member of the Navy Reserves.