In his latest film, The House, Will Ferrell turns his home into a casino to pay for his child’s college education, but on Today he took a simpler approach in helping a college student cover her tuition.
On Tuesday, June 20, the Anchorman star surprised Ithaca College student Samantha Watts with a check for $100,000.
“You can’t actually cash this,” Ferrell joked moments after presenting Watts with the giant check. “They’ll give you a real check.”
Watts, who is studying speech pathology and needs financial support for graduate school, initially thought she was a finalist for the Today scholarship contest and joined host Hoda Kotb outside the morning show’s New York studio to tell her story.
“I love my school, and I love everything that I do there,” she said. “But my dad actually is just recovered from cancer, from esophageal cancer, and a lot of our money had to go toward that last year. So we’re kind of dependent on scholarships and loans right now, and so it would be life changing for me (to win).”
Her life quickly changed moments later as Kotb revealed that she wasn’t merely a finalist but the winner of the scholarship.
“I’m flabbergasted,” Watts said while fighting back tears as her family joined her on the set. “This is amazing!”
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(Photo Credit: NBC)