One Michigan mom found a memorable way to celebrate her college graduation — she graduated while in labor.
Kelsey Hudie, of Michigan, was 38 weeks pregnant on May 6, when she was set to walk across the stage at Henry Ford College in Dearborn to receive her associate’s degree. And, it just so happened, she was already in labor. “On the Tuesday before we graduated, they said that I was dilated two or three times, so that wasn’t going to stop me from walking across the stage,” Hudie told WDIV-TV. “I even said if I had her before the walk, I was just going to hold her in my arms and walk across that stage.”
In order to accommodate Hudie and ensure she could receive her diploma on time, the college’s president, Russell Kavalhuna, called her to the stage at the very start of the ceremony.
“When we bring people through Henry Ford College, they’ve got grit. They’ve got perseverance,” Kavalhuna said. “And this student has told me, and us, ‘I’m going to walk across that stage despite the fact that I am 38 weeks pregnant. I am dilated, and I can’t wait for you, Russ, and your friends to talk for an hour-and-a-half so I need to graduate quickly.'”
Kavulhuna also told the audience, “There’s a few things more important than this college degree, and that’s the thing she’s got to get to.”
Hudie told ABC News that she was proud of her college accomplishment and was determined to walk if she was able. “They did tell me that I didn’t need to walk but I said, ‘I’m walking. [College] was my accomplishment and this is the proof,'” she said. “I was expecting to walk in just like normal, but I was determined.”
She also noted that she was proud to serve as a role model for other pregnant moms. “The crowd just went wild. I think that put a big smile on my face,” she said. “I didn’t really realize when I was walking across the stage with her in my belly that I’d be a big inspiration to others.”
Hudie said that she plans to continue to pursue her goal of becoming a teacher. “I’ve wanted to be a teacher for as long as I can remember. I don’t remember wanting to do anything else,” she said. “If anybody is going through the same thing, I hope that they don’t give up.”
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