Aspiring veterinarian receives $1.3M in scholarships and 49 college acceptance letters

"My family is ecstatic," said Makenzie Thompson. "Getting 49 acceptances and over $1.3 million, they're like 'wow, you're going places.'"

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A high school student from South Fulton, Georgia has been accepted to nearly 50 colleges and awarded more than $1.3 million in scholarships. 

“My family is ecstatic,” Makenzie Thompson, 18, told CNN. “Getting 49 acceptances and over $1.3 million, they’re like ‘wow, you’re going places.'”

Thompson received fee waivers after attending college fairs and she applied to more than 51 schools. She was accepted to 49 schools so far and is reportedly waiting to hear back from Cornell University.

Her family is keeping all of the offer letters in a folder, including responses from Fort Valley State University in Central Georgia, the University of Georgia, and Purdue University. 

“It was a very, very good experience, just to see your hard work paying off and getting to see them just pile up in a folder,” Thompson said. 

The star student at Westlake High School in Atlanta hopes to become a veterinarian so she’s planning to study animal science at Tuskegee University, a historically Black institution in Alabama. The university has a strong track record of producing Black veterinarians. She is extremely fond of all animals and wants to provide the care that they need, all the way from simple vaccinations and animal dental treatment to doing surgical procedures.

Thompson’s love of animals developed at a young age. As an only child, she tells CNN that she grew up with a house full of various pets, including guinea pigs. The high school senior shared her impressive list of accomplishments with 11Alive

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(Credit: Fotolia)

“I am currently the senior class president. I am a four-year veteran and co-captain of the Blue Rain dance team. I am also the vice president of Beta Club. I am one of the baseball managers for the varsity baseball team. I also am a Georgia Merit Scholar recipient. I also am on National Honor Society, National Honor Society of Dance Arts,” she explained. 

Thompson said it wasn’t initially her plan to apply to so many colleges and universities.

“I just took advantage of that opportunity to go ahead and apply to many schools when I went to college fairs, received a fee waiver, and took part in all that,” she said.

“I’m excited for a new environment, fresh start, fresh people,” she said of college life, noting that she is looking forward to “learning who I am as a person.”

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