beyoncé announces new all-female scholarship fund
“Okay ladies now let’s get in formation.”
still from 'lemonade' via youtube
This past weekend marked the one-year anniversary of Lemonade, and Beyoncé is keeping the good vibes going. The groundbreaking visual album just won a Peabody award. And today the singer — always one to encourage women to be their best through pulsating 808s and catchy lyrics — announced the establishment of Formation Scholars.
The scholarship will provide financial support and encouragement to young women pursuing degrees in the creative arts, African-American studies, music, or literature. Four schools are taking part in the program (Howard University, Parsons's School of Design, Spelman College, and Berklee College of Music) and one scholarship will go to a female pursuing an undergraduate or graduate degree at each. While students should contact their school's financial aid office for specific information, Parsons' requires applicants for the scholarship to have a GPA of 3.5 or higher, write a short essay on how Lemonade has inspired their goals, and provide a digital portfolio of creative work." The student selected will receive a $25,000 scholarship.
Beyoncé is arguably the biggest "girl power" pop star out there. From the very beginnings of her career as the lead singer of Destiny's Child, she has performed a metaphorical wave of the hand to no-good men with sassy, confident bangers like "Bug a Boo" and "Bills, Bills, Bills." Her feminism has grown more layered and nuanced with each album. She has gone from telling her man to put a ring on it to declaring girls run the world. On Lemonade, she even prefaced the swagger-laced song "Flawless" with a definition of feminism delivered by novelist Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie.
Queen Bey also has a long history of philanthropy. The singer donated proceeds from her Formation World Tour to organizations battling the Flint water crisis and, in 2010, she partnered with her mother, Tina Knowles-Lawson, to open The Beyoncé Cosmetology Center at Phoenix House, a drug and alcohol rehab center in Brooklyn.
As with most things Bey, it's empowering to watch the singer help young girls become "Independent Women."
Text André-Naquian Wheeler