When Noah VanVooren was born with Down syndrome 18 years ago, doctors had a grim forecast for him—and one that didn’t include higher education. But nearly two decades later, VanVooren is defying the odds as he prepares to assume the role of a very happy freshman this fall at Edgewood College in Madison, Wisconsin.
In the most heartwarming video you’ll watch all day, the high school senior opens his college acceptance letter in front of his family at his Little Chute, Wisc. home. His reaction? Pure joy. At one point he gets so excited he takes off his sweater and flexes his muscles in front of the camera.
Noah will be attending the college’s Cutting Edge Program, which is designed for students with intellectual developmental disabilities.
The young man’s already had quite the banner year. You might remember a story from October when Noah, Little Chute’s varsity football team’s waterboy, got to suit up and score a touchdown for his school. The much-loved student was met with cheers from the crowd, and no one was more proud than his parents.
“He was born 18 years ago and the doctors told us that he would never be able to walk, talk, or do anything,” Noah’s father, Todd, says in the video below. “And then to see him 18 years to do this is amazing.” We couldn’t agree more.
MORE: This Grandmother Is Helping People with Down Syndrome Gain Confidence