Anonymous donors pay loans of graduating mom

Published On: Jun 03 2013 05:15:34 AM HST

A Nashua mother chosen to speak at her Southern New Hampshire University commencement earlier this month just received a nice graduation gift.

A couple in the audience at the graduation was so moved by her speech, they decided to give her $10,000 to help pay down that debt.

Trish Williams doesn't know who the anonymous donors are, but their generosity just helped cut her student loan debt in half.

"There's no words to even describe how it has made me feel or what it has done for my family," said Williams.

The couple who gave her the gift contacted the president of the university to find out if they could help pay off her student loans.

"She in fact like most students was graduating with some debt and we were able to step in and and say, 'Patricia, there's somebody out there who really wants to be part of your life story," said SNHU President Paul LeBlanc.

The university then matched the $10,000 from the donor bringing Trish's loans from $36,000 to $16,000.

"It has really just kind of given me a boost.  It's really energized me and inspired me to keep moving forward," said Williams.

Williams said it has been a long road to get where she is.  She went to college after high school, but dropped out.  She spent the next 10 years working as a secretary and raising her two young children.

She decided to go back to college to fulfill her dream of becoming an English teacher and working with at-risk youth.

"This makes me even more committed to helping other people who maybe had some hard times in their lives to not only be an example but to try to inspire them with with my own generosity," said Williams.

Williams isn't taking any time off.  She's already enrolled in an accelerated masters program at Umass Lowell.  She hopes to start applying for teaching jobs this time next year.


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