ORLANDO, Fla. – Tavares Clarke isn’t your typical college sophomore. Not only is he a little older than your typical college student, but the full-time business major is also homeless.
“I was like, ‘I don’t want to be like this my whole life so let me stick my nose to the grindstone and get it done,'” said Clarke.
Through three semesters at Valencia College in Orange County, Clarke has kept up a 4.0 GPA while working a part-time job while finding shelter wherever he could.
“On the couch. In a storage unit. Sometimes in my car,” said Clarke.
Clarke was in need of a laptop for a final project on which he was working. He was saving up for months in any way that he could get the $700 needed to buy it from Best Buy.
“I went to a plasma donation place and got the rest from there, so I finally got enough money to get it. Then, when I ordered it, I didn’t get it,” said Clarke.
The laptop was shown to be delivered, but Clarke never signed for it. He claims UPS admits it’s their fault and all he needs to do is get Best Buy to file a claim for the lost item, but he says Best Buy won’t do it.
“It goes from, ‘Let me speak to a supervisor,’ to ‘He’s busy right now,’ to ‘A supervisor will tell you exactly what I just told you,'” said Clarke.
Clarke is working with Valencia to see if they can help with the situation. He said his plea isn’t about getting a free hand out. He just wants what he bought with his blood.
“I was just like disappointed, just please give me my money back,” said Clarke.
While it has been a battle, Clarke isn’t going to let this get in the way of a brighter tomorrow.
“Sometimes I have to get up in the morning when I feel like just giving up,” said Clarke. “You got to keep going. You’ve come too far now. You just got to keep going.”
FOX 35 News reached out to Best Buy but we haven’t heard back yet.