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This Lovely Service Dog Received a University Degree

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Dogs are our lovely companions. They are loyal. They are trustworthy. And they are capable of loving us unconditionally. They cheer for us when no one else is cheering. They will sacrifice their lives happily for us. You can see the love they have for us when they run excitedly to meet their owners. Their eyes sparkle. Only dog owners will know what it means to have a loving dog as a friend forever.

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Image Credit: Brittany Hawley

It’s time we celebrate and honor dogs for what they do for all of us. This is what New York’s Clarkson University did when they gave GRIFFIN an honorary degree for all his efforts.

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GRIFFIN, a Service Dog to the Rescue

Besides being so cute, dogs can also provide so much help. We’re talking here about service dogs. The Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) defines a service dog as “a dog that is individually trained to do work or perform tasks for a person with a disability.” Service dogs are indispensable because they help their owners lead a more independent life. They are trained to do a lot of tasks.

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Here comes GRIFFIN, the service dog who has helped its owner throughout grad school.

Brittany Hawley suffers from dystonia. Her muscles contract uncontrollably which causes her so much pain. Her condition made her eligible for a service dog. She got the dog around the same time she was about to start grad school. So more or less, the dog started university with her and has been her loyal and most helpful companion ever since. “We moved to New York together, we started school together and we finished together,” Hawley said. So, if they did everything together, why shouldn’t they get a degree together?

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Hawley earned her degree in occupational therapy from New York’s Clarkson University. The university thought that Griffin deserved a degree as well. After all, the dog has attended all the classes. Here’s what the university said in their press release:

“The two have pursued 100% together a graduate degree in Occupational Therapy attending all the same classes, lectures, faculty appointments, group study sessions, social activities, research projects, and clinical experiences, fully making Griffin an equal member of the Clarkson Golden Knights family.”

And this is what Brittany said to celebrate their achievement: griffin screenshot

What a great dog. Brittany is so lucky to have him by her side. I want to give a shout out to GRIFFIN and all service dogs out there. Good job.

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