Leah Peoples overcame adversity to become 4.0

Leah Peoples earned her position as the chief student marshal for the 2012 Spring Commencement with a perfect 4.0 grade point average, but she would have been excused if it hadn’t happened.


In the fall of her sophomore year, a storage facility she was using caught fire. Everything that she had worked for during the summer was a pile of ashes. Furniture, a laptop, clothes, photographs, textbooks and a television were lost.


Her determination, however, was still intact.


Now the psychology major will lead 636 spring graduates into the F.G. Clark Activity Center at 10:30 a.m. Friday as the chief student marshal – the graduating student with the highest g.p.a.


For the Wilmington, Del. native, the honor is the result of hard work, dedication and devotion to academics and collegiate activities.

“I am honored to be given such a prestigious title,” said Peoples, adding that the 4.0 g.p.a. is the result of “working hard, studying and keeping my goals in mind.”

Starting over after the fire did not become an issue for Peoples as she stayed focus on the goals she set for the upcoming semesters. She managed challenging classes, was president of the SU chapter of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People and she joined Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority Incorporated.

Thankful she paid the extra fee for insurance, Peoples was able to replace most of the material things lost.  Peoples’ mother helped with what she could and was proud that her daughter was able to continue so strongly after the difficult semester set before her.

“I had to stay focused in order to accomplish my goals. Besides, there was nothing I could do but recover,” Peoples said.

Visit Southern's Facebook page to view photos from the 2012 Spring Commencement. https://www.facebook.com/pages/Southern-University-and-AM-College-Baton-Rouge-LA/116700329566?ref=tn_tnmn