Homeless teen becomes valedictorian of high school class

/ 05:36 PM June 03, 2020
Martin Folsom

Martin Folsom. Image: screengrab from Vimeo/Duval Schools

A homeless African American teen defied all odds and finished high school as the top student of his class in the United States.

Martin Folsom graduated as the valedictorian of A. Philip Randolph Career Academy, despite living in homeless shelters with his mom, CBS-affiliate WJAX-TV reported last Thursday, May 28.


Folsom and his mom have been dealing with homelessness since he was a child. The student was also staying in shelters throughout his four years in high school.

Despite being unable to march for his graduation due to the COVID-19 pandemic, Folsom’s joy for his achievement could not be taken away from him.


“It means a lot,” he was quoted as saying. “It kind of gave me as sense [that] all I’ve done and accomplished was worth it.”

The valedictorian also credited his mother for being supportive of his endeavors.

Folsom plans to study accounting and finance at Valdosta State University for college, according to Duval School’s video on Vimeo, May 20. The student also served as class president from his freshman through senior year.

In the future, the valedictorian hopes to work for the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Fox-owned WITI reported on May 30. Cha Lino/JB


Principal goes out of his way to deliver diplomas to 240 graduating students in their homes

WATCH: School admin goes to drive-thru where student works to tell her she’s valedictorian


Read Next
Don't miss out on the latest news and information.
View comments

Subscribe to INQUIRER PLUS to get access to The Philippine Daily Inquirer & other 70+ titles, share up to 5 gadgets, listen to the news, download as early as 4am & share articles on social media. Call 896 6000.

TAGS: African Americans, Graduation, Homelessness, United States, valedictorian
For feedback, complaints, or inquiries, contact us.

© Copyright 1997-2020 INQUIRER.net | All Rights Reserved

We use cookies to ensure you get the best experience on our website. By continuing, you are agreeing to our use of cookies. To find out more, please click this link.