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Check out Na’Shantéa Miller’s GoFundMe page to donate to her dream.

Getting into Harvard grad school is something that, for many of us, may never happen. The prestigious American school is very picky in who it chooses to admit, leaving admission something of a dream for many. For Brampton’s Na’Shantéa Miller, that dream has become a reality. One thing stands in her way, however – the steep cost of tuition, which is over $113,000 CAD per year.

Her story

Having been raised in a family of nine, Miller’s parents often struggled to make ends meet, but always made sure they provided their children proper education. She had an impressive school career, receiving many scholarships and eventually graduating from the University of Ottawa with a double major in Economics and Political Science in May 2018.

When she applied to Harvard grad school (Harvard Kennedy School’s Master’s in Public Policy two-year program) she didn’t think she was going to get in – but she did. Now, nothing stands in the way of her ambitions – except the cost of tuition.

Her plan

She only has $37,281.34 of her own personal and parental savings to put towards the first year – she’s still short $75,824.66 (at the publish time of this article). So, in order to raise funds for both her tuition and a good cause at the same time, she has turned to GoFundMe. The campaign lets anyone donate money to her cause so she can reach her goal. Na’Shantéa says 5 per cent of any support she receives from the campaign will go to providing scholarships to other students and another 5 per cent will go to a rural community in Gulu, Uganda

Having created the GoFundMe campaign on April 26th, she has received many messages of support, encouraging her to pursue her dream. As of May 24, she has reached $34,377 of her $75,825 goal.

The challenges

People haven’t always been so supportive. She has been told in the past, ‘You’re not going to get far with a name like Na’Shantéa. An undergraduate professor told her when she was getting help during office hours that she was “stupid” and a co-worker once said “You don’t have what it takes to get into Harvard.” But those negative comments were overshadowed by the words of advice and encouragement from teachers and mentors who pushed her and reminded her to put everything into perspective.

Now that her dream of being accepted is a reality, she is determined to achieve it and then pay the generosity of others forward.