A high school graduate got a standing ovation as the class speaker at her Massachusetts high school graduation when she gave away the $40,000 cash price she won and asked that it should go to a struggling student.
17-year-old Verda Tetteh who is heading to Harvard on full scholarship returned to the podium for the second time at the Fitchburg High School graduation to give away her cash prize saying: “I am so very grateful for this but I also know that I am not the one who needs this the most,” she told graduation attendees.
Tetteh, whose parents are Ghanaians said her mother, Rosemary earning her community college degree at age 47 years old, inspired her to give it the cash to someone else.
“It just was the thought that someone sitting here might have a struggle like my mom did when she was going to community college,” she said.
Her mother cheered from the crowd. “I was just happy, I stood up and started shouting so loud! I was afraid those in front of me would be like, ‘Why is she that loud?’ But I was so happy with her decision,” she said.
Tetteh plans to study chemistry at Harvard. It’s unclear who will receive the scholarship she gave up.