16-year-old Gabby Douglas is officially being recruited by one of the most prestigious black universities in the country ... Spelman College ... and TMZ has learned the school president has even flown to London to get a leg up on the competition.
We've learned ... Spelman -- an all-girl college in Georgia -- wants Gabby in a bad way ... and sources at the University tell us the Team USA gymnastics superstar has become the number 1 recruit ... by far.
In fact, the President of Spelman, Beverly Daniel Tatum (not pictured below), went out to London and made sure Gabby got a Spelman gift bag ... containing a congratulatory note, school t-shirt and a CD containing a song produced by the college.
Tatum also released a statement to TMZ ... in which she acknowledges the school would LOVE to get its hands on the gold medal winner:
"A young woman who has demonstrated the drive and discipline needed to achieve world-class excellence is likely to have what it takes to be successful at Spelman, and we would welcome her interest in the college."
Spelman is no joke ... both Martin Luther King Jr. and Bill Cosby have daughters who attended S.C.