Homeless Student Receives Heartfelt Financial Aid

Assistant Editor, Carnegie Communications

Aug   2016



Your summer plans may have included a camp out, but it probably wasn’t like 19-year-old Fred Barley’s.

Police found the homeless biology major in a tent on the Gordon State College campus in Barnesville, Georgia, this July. Barley had ridden a children’s bike for six hours to register for classes before his second semester at Gordon State started. In the meantime, he was living in his tent, looking for work, and waiting for the dorms to open so he had a real place to stay.

Instead of kicking him off campus and calling it a day, the police officers decided to help. They brought Barley to a motel and paid for him to stay for two nights—but the good deeds didn’t end there. The motel let him stay even longer, free of charge, and the College opened up the dorms early for him. He was also offered a job at a pizza place, and when his story made the news, he received clothes, school supplies, and a new bike from concerned citizens.  

One local woman even started a GoFundMe page to help Barley, who hopes to attend medical school one day. The campaign raised a total of $183,896 before being shut down due to the “sheer size of the amount of giving,” according to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The money has been placed in an educational trust for Barley to use for tuition and living expenses at school.

You can learn a little bit more about Fred in this story from WSB-TV 2:

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