New Jersey Father and Son Graduate College Together
Friday (May 19), William Paterson University held its 2017 Commencement with over 2,300 students receiving their degrees and embarking on a new journey in life. Among those students were a father and son duo who walked across the stage together and accomplished their higher education goals. According to Fox News, Benjamin Jeanty, 27 and his dad, Duvinson Jeanty, 63, both received their degrees – making them the first in their family to do so.
“It was amazing,” Benjamin told Fox News. “Never in a million years did I ever dream of going to school with my father.”
When he migrated to the U.S from Haiti in the mid- 1980s, Duvinson Jeanty did not have a high school diploma – but in 2007, he decided to get back on track. After years of studying, Jeanty received his associate’s degree, retired from his job as a New Jersey Transit bus driver and was ready to pursue his degree in finance. His son, Benjamin, enrolled at Rutgers University in 2008 but left the following year to work a full-time job at a fast food chain. Not long after, the younger Jeanty was yearning to go back to school after listening to his father’s advice.
“I [started] making good money, and making money is cool, but how am I serving the community? How am I helping others?” Jeanty said.
Benjamin Jeanty transferred to William Paterson University to major in psychology and enrolled part-time while working at a special needs school, Fox News reports.
“He was my biggest cheerleader and inspiration,” Benjamin Jeanty said. “There were sometimes I’d come home from work or class late and I’d see him studying and it would encourage me.”
Although they received their degrees, the duo say the work is not over! According to Fox News, Duvinson says he plans to pursue a masters in finance and run a real estate company he started. And as for Benjamin – he says he will be working full-time at the special needs school.
Photo Credit: Fox News/Website