First Lady Michelle Obama has tapped Wale for her Reach Higher education initiative that will promote higher education and career opportunities for young adults. The program will invite more than 130 college-bound students to the 2015 Beating the Odds Summit in Washington, D.C. These students will represent at-risk, special needs, homeless, foster and other underrepresented youth.
Wale is set to appear at the White House this Thursday to speak with the students and treat them to a show.
“I’m beyond honored and grateful to be involved in the First Lady’s ‘Reach Higher’ initiative and to have the opportunity to sit down with her, as well as perform for the kids of D.C.,” Wale said in a statement. “I believe that the youth are the first step in creating a better country, so to be involved in a program that aims to enrich their lives is truly the greatest reward. Having grown up in Washington, D.C., being invited to the White House by the first lady is a dream come true. Thank you to Mrs. Obama and her entire staff for this opportunity.”
Other participants at the Beating the Odds Summit will include Brown University student Manuel Contreras, Education Secretary Arne Duncan and E! News co-host Terrence Jenkins.
From March 5-8, Walt Disney World Resort hosted 100 high school students from across the nation at the 2015 Disney Dreamers Academy with Steve Harvey and ESSENCE Magazine. The teens, who were chosen out of 10,000 applicants, along with a parent or guardian, received an all-expense-paid trip to Walt Disney World Resort in Orlando, FL, where they took part in a once-in-a-lifetime educational and mentoring program designed to inspire them to dream big, discover a world of possibilities and prepare for their future.
During the 4-day event, participants – referred to as “Dreamers” – learned important skills such as communication techniques and networking strategies, how to build confidence and create fun memories to cherish for a lifetime.
The Academy was founded in 2007 when Disney and Steve Harvey collaborated to combine the ideas from Harvey’s annual mentoring camp for boys with Disney’s concept for a Dreamers Academy.
“Disney is magnificent at making dreams come true,” said Harvey in his welcome address to the Dreamers. “Dreams are previews of life’s coming attractions. A dream will propel you to get an education. Whatever you can imagine you can have.”
During the Dreamers Academy, the Walt Disney World theme parks became vibrant “classrooms,” where Dreamers participated in hands-on, full-immersion “Deep Dive” workshops led by industry experts. Covering a bevy of career paths, ranging from animation to zoology, the Deep Dives do more than expose students to a career choice; they bring to life an opportunity that otherwise might seem distant or impossible.
“I actually didn’t know there were other African-American women neurosurgeons. I mean, I knew… but I never met one in real life,” said Fairfield, CA 11th grader Morgan Buckner after her Deep Dive session led by Orlando-based neurosurgeon Dr. Keyne K. Johnson. “So actually meeting one and seeing the work that she does and how she cares for her patients really instilled in me and solidified how I want to be a neurosurgeon,” Buckner added.
Dreamers were also addressed by motivational speakers such as Capital Prep School founder and Principal Dr. Steve Perry, Bishop TD Jakes and Jonathan Sprinkles, celebrities such as E! host Terrence J, gospel great Yolanda Adams, actor Lamman Rucker, Chef Jeff Henderson, former Disney star Coco Jones, and movie producer Will Packer, entrepreneurs, executives and Disney Cast Members who shared their stories and provided insight on charting a positive course and achievement.
Additionally, the Academy also offered Dreamers instruction on how to present themselves positively via clothing and image in sessions called “Style 101; Young, Fit and Fly” for the young women with Brandi Harvey and Karli Harvey and “Tied to Greatness” for the young men with Dr. Alex Ellis.
“Year after year, Disney Dreamers Academy continues to help students dream big and achieve those dreams,” said Walt Disney Parks and Resorts Vice President of Deluxe Resorts and Disney Dreamers Academy Executive Champion Tracey D. Powell.
ESSENCE Communications President Michelle Ebanks added, “ This program transcends the normal classroom setting, taking learning to the next level. Our valued partnership with Disney Parks and Steve Harvey represents our commitment to the leaders of tomorrow.”
Beginning this evening, “106 & Park’s” Terrence Jenkins will replace Ryan Seacrest as co-host of E! News with Giuliana Rancic. His debut will feature an exclusive interview with Chris Brown. The move comes as the hour-long show looks to expand beyond celebrity, focusing more broadly on pop culture, politics, fashion and music, according to the Hollywood Reporter. Jenkins, formerly known as Terrence J, will join Rancic on the weekday news desk, working on personality profiles and other reporting for the show.
The former BET host will join Giuliana Rancic at the news desk, while his predecessor Ryan Seacrest continues as E! News managing editor.
Terrence Jenkins will slip into Ryan Seacrest‘s former slot as co-host of E! News. With the multi-hyphenate relinquishing his news duties as part of a wide-ranging deal he signed with NBC Universal this past spring, E! has hired the former 106 & Parkco-host to join Giuliana Rancic at the weekday anchor desk beginning November 12. As part of his new role, Jenkins (formerly known as Terrence J) will work on personality profiles and will report for the news program. Continue reading “Terrence J to replace Ryan Seacrest on ‘E! News’”→