Microsoft Prodigy Dies at 16

Bill Gates offered to pay for Arfa Karim's medical care
By Rob Quinn,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 17, 2012 12:17 AM CST
Updated Jan 17, 2012 7:00 AM CST

(Newser) – A computer prodigy known as "Pakistan's girl wonder" has died at the age of 16 from complications caused by an epileptic stroke. Arfa Karim was just nine years old when she became the youngest person ever awarded the "Microsoft Certified Professional" title for mastering the company's programs, the Daily Mail reports. She was invited to visit Microsoft's US headquarters, and met execs including Bill Gates.

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Karim's dream was to work for Microsoft after completing her studies. After learning that Karim had been hospitalized, Gates reached out to her family and offered to pay for her medical care. He offered to fly her to the US for treatment, but because she was on a ventilator, doctors decided against moving her. Her father thanked Gates for his efforts, and described his daughter as a spark "that got attention and love from everyone on the globe." (Read more Arfa Karim stories.)

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