Oprah Winfrey's South African School Graduates First Class

Celebrity News Jan. 13, 2012 AT 3:08PM
Oprah Winfrey's South African School Graduates First Class Credit: Bruce Glikas/FilmMagic

Oprah Winfrey's girls are heading out into the world!

On Saturday, the first class of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls in South Africa will graduate. The Associated Press reports that of the 75 girls who began the school in 2007, 72 are graduating.

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All of the graduates are headed to universities in South Africa and the United States. "We're taking a victory lap here, for transformation," Winfrey, 57, said. "Every single girl is going to leave here with soothing greater to offer the world than her body." 

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"I know what it's like to be a poor girl with your heart's desire to do well in the world," the OWN mogul said. "I chose to use my philanthropy to do what I know."

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The school's campus, which cost $40 million to build, has endured its share of difficulties. A woman working at the school was accused of abusing teenagers soon after it opened (she was acquitted in 2010) and last year, a baby born to a student at the school was found dead.

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