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180 foster kids receive college scholarships

June 7, 2011 12:00:00 AM PDT
The Disney Concert Hall on Tuesday was filled with 180 foster kids who overcame adversity and received college scholarships.

United Friends of the Children, an organization founded more than 20 years ago to help foster youth in Los Angeles, provided $600,000 to the graduates.

"In a way, I'm actually grateful I grew up in foster care, because it kind of taught me how to be like myself, and it kind of shaped me. Now when I do make it, or when I become successful later on, I can say I came from a humble background," said Zarkhi Palmer, who is headed to the University of Southern California.

Despite battling cancer and foster care, Carla Vance graduated high school with honors.

"My future is school. My future is my future restaurant that I want to open," said Vance.

Officials said this year's class was the largest graduating class of foster kids to earn the distinction of being scholars.

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