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Theater shooting victim awarded posthumous degree

By Associated Press
Published On: Dec 16 2012 10:32:25 PM CST
Updated On: Dec 16 2012 10:38:00 PM CST
Jessica Ghawi

Special to ABC News

Jessica Ghawi, an aspiring sportscaster from Denver, was one of the first people confirmed dead by friends and family following the shooting at an Aurora theater.  

DENVER -

Metropolitan State University of Denver has bestowed an honorary bachelor of arts degree upon a student who was killed in the Aurora theater shooting.
    
Jessica Ghawi, who was among 12 people killed in the July 20 shooting that injured 58 others, was a junior majoring in speech communication with a focus on broadcast journalism.
    
Sandy Phillips accepted the degree on behalf of her 24-year-old daughter on Sunday, saying "we actually shed tears of joy instead of tears of sorrow.
    
"This was one of her dreams that she was so close to achieving and not fulfilled," Phillips said, adding that if her daughter was alive to receive the honorary degree, she would have jokingly said, "wow, I didn't even have to study to get this."
    
Ghawi's degree was awarded during the university's fall commencement.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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