VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. (WVEC) -- More than 250 students at Birdneck Elementary School in Virginia Beach received special gifts Monday morning, thanks to Cox High School students.

As part of the “Hoodies for the Holidays” project, students at Cox High bought elementary school students college sweatshirts in order to encourage them to further their education and stay warm this winter.

“A lot of their parents haven't gone to college, it’s really not on their radar,” said Birdneck Elementary Teacher Anne Stauch. “So, we tried getting them to think about it early on in their education.”

11th grader Kenzie Wall helped organize the project and said the students’ reactions were her favorite parts.

“They needed winter clothing for the winter time so that's how the idea evolved and then it started snowballing from there,” said Wall.

Here’s how the project worked: a holiday tag was created that included the name, sweatshirt size and college preference of an elementary school student. Then the tags were distributed throughout different organizations and clubs at Cox High School.

“Individuals actually went out and bought the sweatshirts and brought them in,” said Wall.

Third grader Makenzie Cook said her dream is to attend Harvard University and couldn’t wait to receive her sweatshirt.

“The reason why I want to go there is because I want to be a doctor, a surgeon to help people,” said Cook.

When Cook finally received her gift, she squealed with excitement and hugged the hoodie tight.

“I am very, very, very thankful for this sweatshirt,” said Cook. “It’s so pretty. I love the color burgundy.”