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Homeless High School Student Abandoned by Parents, Accepted to Harvard

Millions of people dream of going to Harvard —and for one formerly homeless janitor and high school student, that dream is happily a reality.

Dawn Loggins of Lawndale, N.C. wasn’t sure if she’d be able to attend college at all. She grew up in unstable environments, often without running water or electricity, and sometimes went months without showering, which incurred ridicule from classmates. Eventually Loggins’ parents abandoned her, leaving her homeless.

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Luckily, Loggins’ community stepped in to help her. After Loggins told her Burns High School guidance counselor her situation, the school was determined to do everything in its power to help. The guidance counselor asked the school’s custodian and bus driver, Sheryl Kolton, if Loggins could live with her until she finished high school. Other staff members contributed money and supplies to help the Koltons support Loggins. The school also offered Loggins a position on the custodial staff to make ends meet.

With encouragement from her teachers and counselors, Loggins applied to Harvard University as her dream choice—and Loggins was accepted, based on her straight-As and list of extracurriculars. This fall, Loggins is headed to Harvard with a full scholarship, room and board and the promise of an on-campus job.

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Even though Loggins’ parents abandoned her, she told CNN that she still loves them and that her experiences with them made her a stronger person. Though she has not spoken with them recently, she invited her parents to her high school graduation.

We sense lots of good karma coming this girl’s way! Watch her heartwarming interview with CNN: