Taylor Swift with Ayesha Khurram (centre) during an event.
Ayesha Khurram, a Pakistani immigrant student living in Mississauga, Canada, received a pleasant surprise when an appeal she made on social media for help to pay her tuition fee and rent caught the attention of American singer-songwriter Taylor Swift, as per a report in The Star newspaper.
After the provincial government announced severe cuts to the Ontario Student Assistance Program earlier this year, Ayesha Khurram was at a loss of how to pay her tuition and rent for the upcoming semester.
Ayesha Khurram is entering her second year in the accounting and financial management programme at the University of Waterloo, as per the newspaper.
As the daughter of two immigrant parents working low-wage jobs in Mississauga and with her mom also struggling from a chronic kidney disease, Khurram could not turn to her family for financial help.
Her OSAP isn’t even enough to pay tuition.
When she posted about her struggles online, one of her friends suggested creating a PayPal account in the event people wanted to help her out and donate money.
She created the account. A couple of hours later, she is reported to have received an email notifying her that singer-songwriter Taylor Swift had sent her $6,386.47 to pay for her tuition. “Ayesha Khurram, get your learn on girl!” the message read. “I love you! Taylor.”
Coincidentally, she had just finished baking Taylor Swift’s chai cookie recipe and Swift had been liking her social media posts about them.
“My parents actually cried when I told them the Taylor news because they couldn’t believe it,” she told the newspaper. “It’s like a guardian angel is watching or something.”
Ayesha Khurram has been a big fan of Swift since 2009. “(Taylor Swift has) been liking my posts since 2015 and I used to live in Pakistan then, so I really had no hope of meeting her, never even dreamed about it,” she said.
This is not the first time the celebrity singer-songwriter has given money to her superfans for post-secondary education purposes. In 2015, she sent Rebekah Bortniker a cheque for $1,989 in order to pay off her student loans in the United States, according to media.
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