Church Pays Off Debt For 34 Students To Graduate


by Elaa Abdeltawab

Posted on February 22, 2019

Church Pays Off Debt For 34 Students To Graduate

Alfred Street Baptist Church donated $ 100,000 to 34 students at Howard University. This amount of money was raised by the church to pay the students’ debts.

Many students were in danger of not graduating. Amongst these students is the 25-year-old senior, Mya Thompson. Thompson, a mother of a 6-year-old, has a busy schedule and a stressful routine. Thompson spends 8 hours of her say at the university to follow the seven classes she has enrolled in. Through the week Thompson starts at 10 a.m. and finishes at 7 p.m. This gives her enough time to pick her son up from school, cook dinner and then go to her overnight shift at D.C. 911 emergency services as a dispatcher.

The Rev. Marc Lavarin came up with the idea of donating money to Howard University’s students to celebrate Black History Month. "I thought, 'What better way to celebrate Black History Month than investing in the young, black heroes of HBCUs?’’ Lavarin said. It is a tradition of the church to host a yearly festival for the students of historically black colleges and universities (HBCU). In addition, Alfred Street Baptist Church donated another $ 50,000 to Bennett College, a women-only HBCU in North Carolina.

Mya Thompson owed Howard University an amount of $2,500 of tuition. This was a big worry for Thompson as graduating is not possible if she does not pay the tuition. Now, Thompson does not have to worry about this major problem thanks to Alfred Street Baptist Church in Washington, D.C., USA. Thompson and another 33 students were cleared of their debts and can focus on their studies again. "They have lifted a huge weight off of my shoulders," Thompson said.

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