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Pictured: Liz Murray (left) with Jennifer Dayton, student
Homeless to Harvard Speaker Inspires Students
Liz Murray was an inspiration to the Street School students she met and spoke to about the challenges she has faced in her life. Street School hosted the Young Presidents’ Organization of Tulsa’s meeting on October 9, 2007 for its members who brought Ms. Murray to Tulsa.
Murray was the child of drug addicts who she began supporting at age 10. She was homeless at 15 after the death of her mother, and living on the streets fending for her life. Determined not to be defined by her circumstances, she recognized education as the key to a fresh beginning and a whole new life. She earned her high school diploma in just two years, and won a scholarship to Harvard University that would turn a penniless girl into a well-educated young woman with a bright future.
Murray’s sincerity, maturity and grace amazed students. With her examples of hard work, determination and daily commitment to achievement, she inspired everyone. That same gutsy strength that pulled her from the streets now transforms the lives of others in need of inspiration to overcome their own obstacles.
Murray’s inspirational story was captured on Lifetime Television’s Emmy-nominated original film, Homeless to Harvard. She was also among the first people to receive Oprah Winfrey’s “Chutzpah Award.”