Brittany Hawley graduated this weekend from Clarkson University in upstate New York, but she didn't receive her degree alone - her loyal service dog Griffin Hawley was there with her, receiving his own honorary diploma. Brittany, who is wheelchair-bound and relies on Griffin for a number of tasks, as well as emotional support, says that she pushed him to graduate from "Day One."
"He did everything I did," Brittany told Huffington Post.
According to the university's statement, the two have "pursued 100% together a graduate degree in Occupational Therapy" - with Griffin attending all the same classes, lectures, faculty appointments, group study sessions, social activities, research projects, and clinical experiences that Brittany did.
It was only fair then that Griffin received a diploma too.
A picture, shared by Clarkson University, shows the stately 4-year-old golden retriever receiving his honorary diploma. In his graduation robes and hat, Griffin made for a very adorable picture.
Brittany also shared a post thanking Griffin on Facebook after the graduation. "I can't wait to see where we go next GRIFFIN! I am blessed that God allowed you to be by my side through the last two and half years. Excited for the adventures ahead of us," she wrote.
The post has received a lot of love online, with many congratulating both Brittany and Griffin for graduating.
CBS News reports that Brittany was diagnosed with complex regional pain syndrome (CRPS) at 16, and has been wheelchair-bound since. Griffin has served as her mobility dog for two and a half years and helps her by fetching items, opening doors, turning on lights and, if she falls, by getting a person or a phone to help.
"Whenever I get a job, he will be with me every single day," says Brittany.
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