Gay Florida teenager Seth Owen, who went viral after he was forced out of his family home, has received an unexpected surprise from talk show host Ellen DeGeneres.
Eighteen-year-old Seth Owen’s religious parents had given him a choice between attending the family’s anti-gay church or moving out after they found out he was gay.
The teenager told Ellen DeGeneres that his parents sent him to harmful “conversion” therapy aimed at “curing” him of his same-sex attraction.
“The dangerous part about that is, as a patient, I believed that this health care professional was doing what was best for me,” he said.
“I asked to go to a different church, and they said that I would either have to go with them or move out.
“And so I decided that day that I had to move out.”
But Owen couldn’t afford to get a loan to pay for college without his parents, and with the help of a former teacher crowdfunded more than $140,000.
After the student’s story went viral, Georgetown University responded by offering him a full scholarship.
He now plans to use the money he raised through the crowdfunding campaign to launch his own scholarship fund “for people in similar situations” to his.
Then, Ellen surprised him with a $25,000 cheque to add to the fund he wants to create for LGBTIQ students who need help attending college.