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Former Ugandan Refugee becomes Valedictorian and earns $240K in Scholarships



According to Columbus, Ohio’s WBNS-TV, Julianne Lukambo, a high school student who spent ten years living in a refugee camp in Uganda, ends her senior year with acceptance to almost a dozen universities and scholarships worth hundreds of thousands of dollars.

Lukambo’s family relocated to the U.S. in 2015. Just four years later, she began her education at Northland High School in Columbus, where she swiftly excelled in her studies, despite battling anxiety.

With $240,000 in college scholarships, Lukambo is the valedictorian of her class as her senior year of high school comes to an end.

Born in Congo, Lukambo and her family were compelled to flee to Uganda during her early childhood due to the country’s ongoing conflicts.


She shared with the station that she often spent time at the refugee camp playing board games.

Reflecting on her journey, Lukambo told WBNS-TV, “Coming from where I’m from, to here now, I would’ve never expected it.

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I’m so appreciative and proud of myself for overcoming all of it.

While working to maintain her grades, the graduating senior also sought to foster relationships with individuals who could advocate for her, including teachers who recommended her for scholarships.

Lukambo hopes to study computer science at the University of Dayton.