(Fox News NY) Biiftu Duresso was the valedictorian this year at Wilson Magnet High School in Rochester. She gave a moving tribute to her parents in her speech this weekend. Her father Jamal Abdullahi raised Biiftu while working as an assistant custodian at his daughter’s high school.
“My parents Jamal and Zubaida made their way to Rochester, New York from Ethiopia in the 80’s and 90’s,” Biiftu said in her speech. “They had the audacity to imagine something better for me and my siblings.”
It was a long journey. Her father escaped Ethiopia for Somalia, and eventually got refugee status from the U.S. government and headed to New York. Biiftu is headed to Columbia University’s Barnard College in the Fall. She hopes to become a doctor and open a clinic in Ethiopia to help the people who are not as fortunate as her family.