Bahamian students to start classes tuition-free at Virginia university after Hurricane Dorian

Their home country was damaged when Hurricane Dorian destroyed parts of the Bahamas, but students from the University of the Bahamas have arrived in the United States to continue their education despite the potential setback the storm posed.

Almost four dozen students arrived at Richmond International Airport in Virginia this week to continue their studies at Hampton University, WRIC reported.

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The rest of the semester will be at no cost. The 46 students will have free tuition, room and board and will be able to take what is being called "compatible courses" to those they were taking back home in the Bahamas.

"Our campus and Grand Bahama was basically ruined, you know, so to have a school, a college open up their facilities for us for a semester and basically take care of everything, I'm just grateful, very grateful," Jullian Dean, a student who will be attending Hampton University, told WTVR.

They were greeted by Hampton University's marching band, cheerleaders and campus student leaders.

Once the semester is done, the students can stay to further their studies at regular tuition rates if they want to, according to WRIC.

Hampton University has had ties to the Bahamas in the past.

"Hampton has been the educational choice for many Bahamians over its long history. I am grateful to President (Dr. William) Harvey and university leadership on this demonstration of kindness and humanity to my home in our time of need," Lawrence Rigby told WRIC earlier this month. Rigby was the Student Government Association President in 2014-2015. He is from Nassau, New Providence.

The Hampton University Office of Admissions and the U.S. Embassy worked together to be able to get the students to attend the Virginia school, WRIC reported.

Classes start Wednesday after Tuesday's orientation, WTVR reported.

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