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Nothing is going to hold me back!

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One New Orleans teen can go just about anywhere he wants for college, but he has more than 80 schools to choose from.

High School senior Darrin Francois has a stack of acceptance letters to sift through. They’re his bounty from blitzing through college applications, and he submitted so many that he eventually lost count of how many applications his submitted.

“I just applied, applied, applied,” Darrin told WGNO. “I didn’t know how many it was, so once they started to come through the mail, I was like oh my gosh, this many? Then, they started coming more and more. Now, today, I have 83 now.”

Along with those acceptance letters, Darrin netted more than $3 million in scholarship money.

Those numbers blew his mother away, Bridget, away.

“Eighty-three colleges? That is wonderful, that is a blessing from God,” she said. “I’m very proud, a proud mother to see my son go forward into his success and go forward into his goals.”

Darrin is simply one of the very determined students at International High School of New Orleans. Another dozen of his classmates have also secured more than 20 college acceptances each, but Darrin far outpaces them.

The school’s faculty credits numbers like these to their policy of encouraging students to fill out at least one college application a day

“I think we got on some of their nerves to be honest with you,” said the school’s director of student support services, Rufus McGee, “but we continued to hammer at them to let them know that the world is yours if you reach out and get it.”

While Darrin hasn’t chosen his school just yet, but he’s not without his options. Scholarship money will be a big deciding factor for him.


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