Rappers Save Black Students’ Education

And they put governments to shame.


While white celebrities cherry-pick organizations they could help without political implications, Black artists’ charitable activities are always entrenched in the issues of systematic racism and inequality. Hip-hop musicians relate to this responsibility in particular because the importance of roots and origin fits into the aesthetics of rap. That’s why many rappers from both the US and UK decide to help black students when governments and systems fail.

Travis Scott promised on Twitter to pay for five students’ first semesters at any historically Black college or university in the US, whereas Kanye West started a college fund for George Floyd’s daughter after his tragic death. 

But the trend started even before the 2020 tragedy. In 2017 Chance The Rapper provided the schools in his hometown, Chicago with $2.2m. Megan Thee Stallion, on the other hand, went a step further with an intersectional perception of the problem. Her scholarship program “Don’t Stop” gives women of color $10,000 for a degree.

In the UK, Stormzy supports Black British students at Cambridge University with £10m fund. The Positive Direction Foundation, set up by the London rappers Krept and Konan in 2017, is more specific as it provides secondary school students with access to music workshops.

The recognition of the problem among rappers is a positive tendency but on the other hand, it reveals how much of a burning problem systematic racism and classism are in the societies around the world. And more importantly, how passive governments and systems are.

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