19-year-old holds master’s de­gree, work­ing to­ward full coun­sel­ing li­cen­sure

GA Voice - - Front Page -

“[In col­lege] peo­ple were very pro­tec­tive. I think they saw a bit of them­selves in me at first — that kid seems a lit­tle lost. There were a lot of moth­ers who came out of the wood­works to help care for me and make sure I knew where I was go­ing.”

By DAL­LAS ANNE DUN­CAN

At the ripe old age of 19, Keith Xavier Hard­ing al­ready holds a bach­e­lor’s de­gree in mu­sic per­for­mance, a master’s in coun­sel­ing and a cer­tifi­cate declar­ing him 2017’s top up-and-com­ing LGBT youth in the Ge­or­gia Voice Best of At­lanta awards.

Though he’s only been an At­lantan for a year — Hard­ing grew up with nine sib­lings in Mont­gomery, Alabama — he’s made strides and found his niche. He and his part­ner are about to cel­e­brate their third an­niver­sary, he’s an as­so­ciate ther­a­pist at Thriv­ing Heart work­ing on his coun­sel­ing li­cense and he’s a proud mem­ber of OurSong cho­rus and ACFLY, the At­lanta Coali­tion for LGBTQ Youth.

Ge­or­gia Voice re­cently caught up with Hard­ing to learn more about his back­ground, his fu­ture ca­reer plans and just how he got into Faulkner Univer­sity at age 11.

You were home­schooled year-round. Was that how you were able to go to col­lege so young, lit­er­ally be­cause you fin­ished ev­ery­thing at an ear­lier age?

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