Rihanna Named Harvard University’s Humanitarian of the Year

Rihanna was named Harvard University’s 2017 Humanitarian of the Year on Wednesday (Feb. 22, 2017).

The singer will accept the Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at the college’s Sanders Theatre on Feb. 28 at 4 p.m. EST.

S. Allen Counter, a neuroscience professor and the director of the Harvard Foundation said the following in praise of Rihanna and her philanthropic efforts:

“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. She has also created the Clara Lionel Foundation Scholarship 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.”

In 2012, Rihanna founded the aforementioned Clara Lionel Foundation, which fights for basic rights to education and health in developing nations. In January, she traveled to Malawi to meet with local government officials, mentors, students, and teachers.

Past recipients of the award include Tommy Hilfiger, James Earl Jones, and Malala Yousafzai.

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