A Connecticut high school graduate has decided to turn down a $40,000 scholarship, telling school officials to give it away to students in need.
Verda Tetteh, a 17-year-old girl from Fitchburg, had initially been awarded the scholarship for general excellence. But at Friday's commencement ceremony, she announced that she was turning it down so that other students can receive it, WBZ News in Boston reports.
"It is such a great honor, but I also know that I am not the most in need of it," Verda said at the graduation, which was met with a standing ovation.
Verda, a straight-A student, explained that it was her Christian faith that prompted her to give away the scholarship. Verda also has several other scholarships, so she felt it was best to give the scholarship away to a student or multiple students who really need it.
"Yes, I would do it again," Verda told the news outlet.
When the assistant principal's urged students to be "bold and selfless," Verda thought of her mother, Rosemary Tetteh, who graduated from a community college at the age of 47 and often works 80-hours a week to provide for her family.
Rosemary, who brought her daughter to the U.S. from their native Ghana, said that she was proud of her daughter's decision.
"Now I'm 100-percent sure she is ready to go into the world on her own," Rosemary said.
At the present time, the details of who gets the scholarship have not been worked out.
"I feel like, you know, God has gotten me this far, and he will take me the rest of the way," Verda asserted.
Verda will be going to Harvard University in the fall and will focus on pre-med studies. She said that even if she comes up short on cash, she knows she did the right thing in giving away the scholarship.
"Whatever happens, someone else needed it more," Verda said.
Photo courtesy: ©WCVB 5 News/Screenshot
Video courtesy: ©WCVB 5 News
Milton Quintanilla is a freelance writer. He is also the co-hosts of the For Your Soul podcast, which seeks to equip the church with biblical truth and sound doctrine. Visit his blog Blessed Are The Forgiven.