Aoki Lee Simmons is a Harvard graduate! The young adult finished her undergraduate studies at the Ivy League University earlier this week.
“I feel grateful, proud and relieved — in that order,” Aoki tells PEOPLE exclusively. “It’s a surreal feeling to be done with something that was such a huge part of my life,” the youngster added. “Now, like every other graduate, I’m on to the next chapter.”
Aoki Lee Simmons began her studies at Harvard University at the age of sixteen years old. The teen also worked to build her modeling career, which ruffled a few feathers. Aoki, however, remained true to herself throughout the experience.
“I’m so thankful for the village of people that spurred me along and helped keep me focused,” the young scholar shares. “My mom, my sister, my little brothers back at home,” Aoki tells PEOPLE. “It took a whole tribe, trust me,” the young adult exclaims.
A portion of Aoki’s “next chapter” includes fashion. “I’ll be in New York modeling, writing and working at my mom’s company,” the young adult says when asked about her immediate plans for the future. “There are so many projects that I can’t wait to dive into,” Aoki explains. “But it will be nice to take a breath!”
Kimora Lee Simmons attended two college commencement ceremonies this month. Aoki’s older sister, Ming Lee Simmons, finished her undergraduate studies at New York University (NYU).
“This has been a banner season for our family,” Kimora tells the press. “Both my daughters graduating the same year — wow,” the celebrity mom exclaims. “I can’t begin to express how proud I am of them. They’re both such brainy beauties! And they’re all mine,” Kimora exclaims.
“I want Aoki Lee to keep the same energy and passion she’s shown her entire life,” the fashion mogul says of her youngest daughter. “It’s nice to have a Harvard grad in the family, but it might be nice to have an attorney, too,” Kimora continues. “I’ve promised myself I’ll wait at least a week before I start gently nudging her in that direction, though.”