Yara Shahidi Celebrates Completing Her Thesis, Getting 1 Step Closer to Graduation

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Yara Shahidi is one step closer to graduating! The Grown-ish actress took to Instagram on Wednesday to celebrate a crowning achievement for any college student: finishing her thesis. 

The 22-year-old shared a video on her page, showing her standing in the middle of a snowstorm and all decked out in Harvard merch. "Weighing in at 32,508 words and 136 pages, is this thesis writer, Yara Sayeh Shahidi! Let’s go," she cheers in the video, showing off her arm muscles and laughing with whomever is taking the video.

"YOUR FAVORITE THESIS WRITER IS OFFICIALLY DONE WRITING✨💪🏽TRY NOT TO BE INTIMIDATED BY MY STATS 😤," she captioned the post, tagging the phrase "thesis complete" and "class of 2022."

The undergraduate got into Harvard in 2017 but took a gap year before beginning her studies. For the past four years, Shahidi has been juggling her acting career and her studies, which is pretty similar to her character, Zoey Johnson's, journey. Zoey continually struggles to handle her studies at Cal U and her evolving fashion career in the Freeform series.

Never has that similarity been more apparent than at the Emmy Awards last year, when Shahidi revealed to ET that she requested to present an award early in the show because she had to make it out in time to catch a flight back to Harvard.

"I do fly out tonight to make it to class in time," the Harvard student, who presented the Outstanding Supporting Actor in a Comedy Series award to Ted Lasso's Brett Goldstein, told ET. "... The lovely people at The Academy really helped me out because I was like, 'Guys, I have a hard out to make this flight.'"

Another similarity between Shahidi and her character is that they're both graduating this year! The currently airing fourth season of Grown-ish features Zoey's final year as a student at Cal U and, according to Shahidi, the character's looming graduation raising the stakes for her loose ties.

"I'm excited because this is where the rubber hits the road, and all of the theoretical learning moments and journeys that these kids have been on have become really important and grounded in the fact that they have to figure out what they're about to do with the rest of their lives," Shahidi told ET

"I feel like the pending, looming, cloud of graduation gives this part of the season such interesting stakes because there is no messing around, you know? Zoey's had her time where she dropped out but she's always known that she could go back to school and that's always been a very stable place," she added. "And so, the fact that that's about to be pulled out from under her leads to really interesting storylines of having to distill what matters."

But graduation won't be the end of the story; Grown-ish was recently renewed for season 5 with Black-ish star Marcus Scribner joining his TV sister on the spinoff and reprising his role as Andre Johnson Jr. as he embarks on his journey to being "grown."

Grown-ish airs Thursdays at 10 p.m. ET on Freeform, and the next day on Hulu. 

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