Verda Tetteh, a student at Massachusett’s Fitchburg High School, earned the prestigious General Excellence award at her graduation ceremony last week after addressing the crowd as a class speaker. In addition to being an excellent student, she had also recently been accepted to Harvard University, one of the best colleges in the world.
But after thinking things over, Tetteh decided to turn down the $40,000 scholarship instead of asking that it be given to a student in need who could use help paying for community college courses, the Boston Globe reported.
After receiving the award at her June 4 graduation, Tetteh went onstage and addressed the crowd again after listening to the high school’s assistant principal speak on selflessness, making up her mind to give up the $40,000 scholarship.
According to the Boston Globe, Tetteh graciously expressed her gratitude for receiving the award, but then generously asked if school officials could re-award the scholarship, saying onstage, “I am so very grateful for this, but I also know that I am not the one who needs this the most. Knowing my mom went to community college and how much that was helpful, I would be so very grateful if administration would consider giving the … scholarship to someone who is going to community college.”
Fitchburg High graduate asks school to award $40,000 scholarship to another student https://t.co/wRGcbY3gFF
— The Boston Globe (@BostonGlobe) June 8, 2021
Thankfully, the Fitchburg, Massachusetts, high school seems to be on board with Tetteh’s plan. Jeremy Roche, the school’s principal, is currently planning to meet with the new graduate to discuss the re-awarding process, Massachusetts Patch reported.
After receiving a standing ovation for her impromptu speech, Tetteh named her mother, who immigrated from Ghana and obtained her bachelor’s degree at age 47, as an inspiration to always do what’s right, according to the Boston Globe.
Tetteh plans to study chemistry and pre-med courses at Harvard University, where most of her financial aid is covered.