Ten years after launching a school in South Africa, Oprah Winfrey is reuniting with her first students to see how far they’ve come.
The emotional reunion takes place in Fusion’s upcoming documentary O Girls, in which Oprah looks back on the opening of the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls. “My work with these girls feels as natural to me as if they were my own children,” the former talk show host shared during the interview. “For me, this is what mothering was meant to be.”
O Girls will also document the lives of five of the girls from the original class, some of whom are set to graduate college. “I wanted to help girls who were like me…if only,” Oprah says in the trailer. “You give her an opportunity to higher education. Seeing that become more of themselves is pretty amazing when you think about it.”
One student cries in the trailer while expressing her gratitude for the opportunity she was given. Only a few scenes later do viewers get to see her in a cap and gown receiving her diploma.
The school opened its doors in 2007, and in 2012 Oprah attended the first graduation ceremony for 72 young women.
“The pride that I feel today is overpowering,” Winfrey reportedly said during the graduation. “I have been on a mission my whole life to be able to give back what I have been given. Today I am fulfilling that mission. This class will prove that when you invest in the leadership of girls, you invest in a nation.”
While the school has faced controversy some controversy—a dorm matron was accused of sexually abusing students shortly after the school opened, and some of the students were suspended for “inappropriate behavior” and sexual misconduct back in 2009—it mainly proved to be a positive addition to the impoverished community.
O Girls will air Jan. 15, 2017 at 8 p.m. ET on Fusion.