7 year-old boy saves $20,000 for college by recycling

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Ryan Hickman discovered his love of recycling when he was just shy of 4 years old.

"We had gone to the center with a couple of bags, and he really loved the actual act of putting all the cans and bottles into the machine and getting the money for it,” said his father. “And that kind of got him hooked.”

Fast forward three years and Ryan, now 7, has his own recycling business, http://ryansrecycling.com/, which also boasts a website.

On the site you can buy one of his t-shirts, with the proceeds going to the Pacific Marine Mammal Center. 

Ryan has donated over $2,000 to the group, "For the sea lions to get food and medicine.”

On her show recently, Ellen Degeneres asked Ryan why he loves recycling so much. “Because it saves the planet and it keeps bottles and cans out of the ocean for animals to not get sick or die.”

Ellen presented Ryan with a check for $10,000 from Shutterfly. 

That means, at age 7, Ryan has already saved $20,000 for college, although he says he’d like to buy a garbage truck with the money. Don’t let anyone crush your dream, Ryan. 

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