David Carter Finally Got His College Degree Four Decades after the Homeless Texan Dropped Out

David Carter was 23 years old and had one semester remaining when he dropped out of college in 1973. 

Over four decades ago, Carter injured his hand when he punched a glass window in an alcohol-related incident. He dropped out of the University of Texas, where he had been pursuing a Studio Arts degree. 

Afterward, Carter struggled with schizophrenia, alcohol and drug abuse, and homelessness throughout his life. However, he remained near his university and was recently discovered by a student. 

Ryan Chandler shared Carter's story for an assignment he did for the Daily Texan. He was surprised to learn that the 67-year-old still wanted to complete his degree. 

Carter had already completed 87 credits before he dropped out. According to Spectrum News Austin, he would only have one semester to finish to attain his degree at the time.

Chandler was interested in making it happen. He told People magazine,  “After I published a feature on him in December, his story gained some local attention and I got the ball rolling with the university.”

He added

“David has the intelligence and drive to get back to school. His situation just prevents him from having a reliable means of communication and the time to work through the process.”

With the help of the school, Chandler, a student journalist, was able to "provide the connections and communications for him, set him up with an advisor and pay small fees related to his application."

The ball really got rolling when an alumnus of the university offered to pay Carter's tuition. He will have to do 64 hours because of "changing degree requirements," Chandler said, but Carter is more than willing.

 

He told Spectrum News that the gesture was "the greatest blessing [he's] ever received." He also revealed, "What I'd like to do is spend the rest of my life just doing research and writing books." 

However, with the degree, he believes his work will be that much improved. "But I think the books I write will be better because of the college education and coming into contact with the great minds," he explained.

Meanwhile, Chandler is happy that he could influence people's misaligned perceptions about homeless persons. Speaking to People, he said: “Some students see the homeless as dangerous, lazy or annoying, and those stereotypes are simply wrong. No one chooses to be homeless." 

He added: 

"Those who are have been victim to misfortunes outside of their control, such as mental illness, addiction or family problems. David is just one face behind those problems. He — and everyone like him — has hopes and dreams just like every fortunate person, and they deserve to be treated like it.”

Another inspiring story emerged out of Cornwall, England. Jordan Adlard-Rogers struggled for most of his adult life in Porthleven, England. That is until he discovered he was the heir to Penrose Estate. 

The 1,536-acre property was owned by the late Charles Rogers, a British aristocrat. Upon his death in 2018, authorities finally conducted a DNA test that matched with Jordan. Prior to that, Jordan tried for years to get the test done.

Jordan promptly moved into his new estate with his partner Katie Hubber and their son Joshua.  He now receives $1,300 from a trust fund and hopes to give back to his community by starting non-profit charity organizations.

Back in the US, a homeless man also received a new home and his reaction to the drastic life change went viral. Thanks to YouTube prankster, Rahat Hossain, Eric's story was shared online. 

When people saw it, they raised $44,000 to put the deserving man in a much better situation than living on the street. Over 40 million people viewed the emotional video and were touched by the story.