When Philadelphia teenager Richard Jenkins used to sleep in a homeless shelter, bullies called him “Harvard” because he was a bookworm. But he’s showing them because now Jenkins is headed to that Ivy League college and he’s got a full scholarship.
Jenkins is this year’s valedictorian at his boarding school, Girard College, in north Philadelphia. He says he decided to really focus on academics after being embarrassed in sixth grade to tell a friend he was staying in a homeless shelter. The now 18-year-old says, “That’s when I realized I’ve got to buckle in because I can’t have my potential kids going through what I’m going through now.”
The star student’s mother says she “was not surprised” he got into Harvard. Jenkins plans to study computer science so he can create a more intuitive virtual assistant.