Straight A Student Gives Back, Tutors Peers For Free

By Sarah Glover
|  Thursday, Jun 26, 2014  |  Updated 11:56 AM EDT
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Straight A Student Spreads Love of Learning

Christian Butts

Cherry Hill High School East graduating senior Christian Butts took an honors club requirement to tutor kids after school a step further. Butts made himself available to his peers around-the-clock for online tutoring help at no cost during the school year.

"Well in my mind, I was just trying to help a student in need," said Butts. "For me to ask for money -- it wouldn't be right."

The school's Cumlaude Society is a club reserved for the top academic students out of the 499 senior class members. The honor of belonging to the club didn't phase Butts. The 18-year-old wanted to spread his aptitude for learning with others.

When students needed extra help with homework or studying, who did they call?

Butts.

He answered Skype calls as late as 2 a.m. on school nights and helped his peers work through their study problems.

Butts tutored classmate Anna Evenosky. She wrote about the experience on Facebook: "So happy I had the opportunity to have you tutor me, its so nice to have somebody so caring and willing to help like you!" 

Christian's father, Timothy Butts, described his disciplined son as sharing out of the "goodness of his heart."

Timothy Butts said he taught his son that life is about choices and there would be times that require tough choices. The younger Butts often passed on the opportunity to hang out with friends on weeknights and made the choice to stay home and study. Those choices seem to be paying off for the ambitious teen. 

Butts has become a model student at school without trying or seeking attention. He received praise from his principal Lawyer Chapman who said the honor student has "always been willing to help others" and is a good example.

Classmate David Nahum agreed and wrote on Facebook,  "Greatest kid ever and I am so proud to call him one of my best friends. He makes me want to be a better person with each day that passes."

Butts not only tutored his fellow students but mentored an underclassman as well.

When he wasn't studying, Butts was a member of the high school track team, Model UN and traveled the world as a member of the Boys Choir of Philadelphia. He put his Spanish interpretation skills to work on a 10-day community service trip to Costa Rica last year.

"He has accomplished more in his 18 years than many of us accomplish in a lifetime," said his Spanish teacher Esther Alpizar. "Christian is like a baseball catcher who can catch any ball thrown his way and then can aim it in any direction he needs to and he does it for the pure joy of participating in the game."

Butts will attend the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania this fall to study business economics and public policy. He plans to continue tutoring and sees law school in his future.

"I feel as though if you have the ability to do so, everyone should have some sort of inner obligation to help others with the power they have. I felt good helping other people," Butts said.

Pictured: Christian Butts walks across the stage at the Cherry Hill High School East gradution on June 17.


 Contact Sarah Glover at 610-668-5580, sarah.glover@nbcuni.com or follow @skyphoto on Twitter.

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