Taylor Swift donates US$30,000 to help black London teen study math

Taylor Swift attends the world premiere of “Cats” in New York on Dec. 16, 2019. (Photo by Evan Agostini/Invision/AP, File)

Vitoria Mario, a black teenager from London, England will now be able to realise her dream of becoming a mathematician thanks to Taylor Swift.

The multiple Grammy sward-winning musician donated US$30,000 to the 18-year-old’s GoFundMe which she started to raise £40,000 (US$53,000). With Swift’s donation, she reached her goal.

Mario moved from Portugal to the UK in 2016, and despite not being able to speak English, she managed to attain top grades in her GCSEs, exams usually taken by English students at the end of their fifth year in secondary school, in 2018.

Vitoria Mario came to Britain four years ago speaking no English.
Mario moved from Portugal to Britain four years ago

Her mom remains in Portugal and her father is dead. Her GoFundMe account outlined her financial struggles in trying to pursue higher education, explaining that she was not eligible for loans or grants, because she does not have “Home” status in the UK.

This summer, she achieved the highest grades possible in her final high school exams, receiving an offer to study Mathematics at the University of Warwick.

“I came across your story online and am so inspired by your drive and dedication to turning your dreams into reality,” wrote Swift on the GoFundMe page. “I want to gift you the rest of your goal amount. Good luck with everything you do!”

Mario said she had emailed 442 “top firms” for assistance “but was rejected or left without response” before starting the fundraiser.

“As desperate times called for desperate measures, I also went to some of the most affluent postcodes in London, including Kensington, to post my story through letterboxes, but unfortunately faced the same response,” she added.

Donations now stand at almost US$58,000, with contributions coming in from nearly 1,000 donors.