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Rihanna named Harvard’s Humanitarian of the Year

Who needs a Grammy tbh?


Christine Friar


Posted on Feb 23, 2017   Updated on May 24, 2021, 10:50 pm CDT

Not a bad week!

Just a day after Rihanna landed her historic 30th Top-10 single on Billboard’s Hot 100, Harvard University has announced it’ll be honoring the singer with its 2017 Humanitarian of the Year award. The school will honor the Barbadian singer/Instagram icon/designer/philanthropist at a ceremony on its Cambridge, Massachusetts, campus next Tuesday, focusing specifically on her work with breast cancer treatment and affordable education for people living in the Caribbean.  

From the Harvard Gazette:

Rihanna has charitably built a state-of- the-art center for oncology and nuclear medicine to diagnose and treat breast cancer at the Queen Elizabeth Hospital in Bridgetown, Barbados,” said S. Allen Counter, the Harvard Foundation’s director.

She has also created the Clara and Lionel Foundation Scholarship Program [named for her grandmother and grandfather] for students attending college in the U.S. from Caribbean countries, and supports the Global Partnership for Education and Global Citizen Project, a multiyear campaign that will provide children with access to education in over 60 developing countries, giving priority to girls and those affected by lack of access to education in the world today.

Previous honorees include Malala Yousafzai, Arthur Ashe, and Ban Ki-moon.

Rihanna will accept the award at a ceremony that will be free to students (dang) on Feb. 28 in the University’s Sanders Theater. 

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*First Published: Feb 23, 2017, 4:56 pm CST