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This Immigrant Teacher Gets Emotional On ‘The Ellen Show’ After Finding Out What Surprise Was In Store For Her And Her Students

“I make sure that they value their culture as much as I do mine.”

Recently on “The Ellen Show,” Ellen DeGeneres surprised audience member Emily Francis by inviting her onto the stage during the show. DeGeneres introduced Francis to the audience as someone who came to the U.S. from Guatemala when she was 15 years old with only a 6th grade education. Francis now teaches English as a second language at Irvin Elementary School in Concord, North Carolina.

Francis told the audience about her journey to the U.S. as an immigrant prior to becoming an English as a Second Language (ESL) teacher. When Francis was 13 years old, her mother immigrated to the U.S. leaving Francis behind in Guatemala to care for her four younger siblings. It wasn’t until Francis was 15 years old, in 1994, that her mother raised enough money to reunite with her children. Despite the obstacles Francis and her siblings faced as immigrants arriving to the U.S., her grandmother, who was a U.S. citizen, was able to help them.

Ever since then, Francis has worked towards becoming an English teacher. She makes it her goal not only to help children learn English, but to embrace and acknowledge every student’s culture.

After speaking to Francis, DeGeneres brought another guest onto the stage and that was Hamdi Ulukaya, CEO and Founder of “Chobani,” a popular Greek yogurt company.

Similar to Francis’ story, Ulukaya also immigrated to the U.S. in 1994 from a small village in Turkey where he grew up. Ulukaya admits that when we first moved to New York City, he was overwhelmed by the city. However, he took a risk and decided to buy a factory that was being sold for junk in 2005. “Everybody said I was crazy,” Ulukaya recalled.

With only five factory workers, Ulukaya and his employees began to produce the yogurt that his mother used to make. Now The Chobani Foundation has a total of 2,000 employees.

As a result of this success, The Chobani Foundation decided they wanted to support the elementary school Francis teaches at and surprised her with a check of $100,000. In the video above, you see that Francis was left in utter shock when they brought out the large check. She broke down in tears and thanked Ulukaya again and again.


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WATCH: This Nurse From Las Vegas Was On A Plane On Her Way To ‘The Ellen Show’ On The Same Night That The Mass Shooting Took Place

Here's What We Know About The Alleged School Shooter Nikolas Cruz

things that matter

Here’s What We Know About The Alleged School Shooter Nikolas Cruz

Broward Sheriff's Office

This is the 30th mass shooting in the U.S. this year.

A shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida has left 17 people dead and 14 injured. Nikolas Cruz is in custody as the suspect who perpetrated the school shooting on Valentine’s Day with an AR-15 rifle. The AR-15 is an assault style weapon that is highly customizable. The AR-15 weapon has been used in multiple mass shootings including Aurora, Colorado, Pulse Nightclub in Orlando, Florida, and Sandy Hook Elemntary School in Newtown, Connecticut. The shooting at the Florida high school has become the 18th school shooting in a month and a half, according to Everytown For Gun Safety. That is 18 school shootings in 45 days. Students at Cruz’ former high school say that they are not surprised that Cruz would commit a mass shooting at the high school. According to law enforcement officials and former classmates, Cruz’ social media accounts were filled with images of guns, knives, and animals he killed with BB guns.

“All he would talk about is guns, knives and hunting,” Joshua Charo, 16, a former classmate at the high school, told Miami Herald. “I can’t say I was shocked. From past experiences, he seemed like the kind of kid who would do something like this.”

According to Miami Herald, Cruz was expelled from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School for undisclosed behavioral reasons. Yet, student Victoria Olvera, 17, says that he was abusive with his ex-girlfriend and got into a fight with her boyfriend after they broke up. Olvera also said that Cruz was expelled last school year.

Cruz and his biological brother were adopted by Lynda and Roger Cruz, a couple from Long Island, New York, who raised the boys in Parkland, Florida. Roger died in 2005 of a heart attack and Lynda died in November from pneumonia brought on by the flu. After the death of his mother, a family friend took the two boys into their home, according to Miami Herald. The family that took him in knew about his AR-15 but made him keep it locked in a gun safe. He was given a key for the safe.

Nikolas has been charged with 17 counts of premeditated murder.

According to the Anti-Defamation League, the white supremacy group Republic of Florida admits that Nikolas was part of the organization.

This is an ongoing story. Check back to mitú as the story continues to develop.

(H/T: Miami Herald)


READ: A School Shooting Left Two Students Dead At A New Mexico High School

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