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Commencement speaker gives graduates $1,000 each, asks them to give half away

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Posted at 8:46 AM, May 24, 2021
and last updated 2021-05-24 20:04:18-04

QUINCY, Mass. — Graduates of a Massachusetts college are starting off on the right foot thanks to a generous gift from their commencement speaker.

At Quincy College’s ceremony on Friday, businessman Robert Hale announced that he would give $1,000 to each graduate, but he had one condition. He asked them to donate half of the money to a good cause.

“We're going to give you each $1,000 cash right now,” said the CEO of Granite Telecommunications during his speech.

The money was a welcomed surprise for the nearly 250 graduates after a year with so many uncertainties and twists.

“You have persevered in the pandemic. You haven't had a chance to celebrate the last 14 months as much as you should,” the CEO of Granite Telecommunications told the graduates. “So, we want to give you a gift today.”

The students received two envelopes decorated by local school children, one with $500 to keep for themselves and another with $500 to give away, WCVB reports.

The money will also help those who have struggled to make ends meet.

“I had to pay a lot of money for school this year and I couldn't really afford it, so this money really help me a lot,” graduate Annina Ibrahim told WCVB.

Hale said he hopes the gift will inspire the students to continue giving throughout their lives.

“We have experienced great joy in giving. I hope they experience that joy and I hope they continue to do that for the rest of their lives,” said Hale.