Uber driver graduates college thanks to passenger paying off her student debt

Latonya Young striking up a conversation with a man she was driving turned out to be a windfall that is allowing her to finish her education

Latonya Young (WSB-TV)

An Atlanta area Uber driver was able to start the new year with a new lease on life thanks to a generous passenger who left the tip of a lifetime.

According to CNN, when driver Latonya Young made small talk with a passenger she picked up from an Atlanta United soccer game outside of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, she had no clue that their conversation would lead to a financial windfall.

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During the exchange, the 43-year-old single mom shared that she was struggling to put herself through college, despite working as a hairstylist during the day and driving people around for Uber during the evenings.

As a result, she’d had no choice but to drop out of Georgia State University due to $700 unpaid balance that she couldn’t afford to settle with the school.

“Every time I got ready to pay the money, my kids needed something,” she later told Atlanta’s WSB-TV. “I said, ‘OK, I’ll just wait.'”

But just a few days after telling her story to passenger Kevin Esch, Young unexpectedly received a phone call from Georgia State.

“And the message stated, ‘You can register for classes now.’ I was literally blown away. A stranger has never done that — or done anything like that — for me,” she told the outlet.

“When he paid the balance, I had to do this for him,” she continued. “I maintained my grades. As and Bs. Just trying to do everything to make sure he knows I appreciate him.”

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As a result of the kind gesture, Young earned an associate’s degree in criminal justice, and said Esch even went the extra mile and attended her graduation.

Now she’s kicking off 2020 with plans to head back to school to pursue a bachelor’s degree and fulfill her ultimate goal of becoming a lawyer.

“This one changed my life. That one ride,” a grateful Young beamed.