Spectrum News: UC student raises money for children in Ethiopia

Bitanya Derese raised $1,000 during her first semester at UC

First-year University of Cincinnati student Bitanya Derese has continued to raise money for children living in poverty in her native Ethiopia, Spectrum News reported.

Derese, one of 10 students this year who received the annual Cincinnatus Presidential Scholarship, started raising money for children in Ethiopia while she was in high school. She raised $1,000 during her first semester at UC, bringing the total amount her charitable foundation has raised to almost $4,000.

“I want to keep spreading the world and trying to help the people of Ethiopia,” Derese told Spectrum News. “Whether it’s my 9-to-5 job or not, I always want to be doing something that gives me a sense of purpose in this world.”

Derese, who is studying marketing in UC’s Carl H. Lindner College of Business, immigrated to the United States with her family when she was 3 years old. As a high school sophomore, she started her foundation as a way to support children who aren't as fortunate as her.

“Bitanya’s story is one of generosity, gratitude, and empowerment,” said Ruth Seiple, director of the Lindner Business Honors program. “In a community where leadership is nurtured, (we’re) giving her a place to make an impact beyond the classroom and into her personal circles of influence.

“What is unique about Bitanya in the honors program is her initiative as a freshman in her first semester on campus. She has hit the ground running, wasting no time or opportunities.”

Read more from Spectrum News.

Featured image at top: University of Cincinnati student Bitanya Derese leads a charitable foundation that raises money for an organization called Korah Kids, which supports some of the most vulnerable children in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. Photo courtesy of Bitanya Derese

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