Comedian and actor Kevin Hart surprised two Atlanta-bred students and seven out-of-staters at Georgia HBCUs Monday night with the Hart Charity Scholarship to help with the financial burden of college expenses.
A total of 18 students received the honor, part of a $600,000 scholarship initiative from Hart, the Knowledge is Power Program and the United Negro College Fund aimed at supporting HBCUs and HBCU students.
The award is based on students’ academic and personal achievements.
“Research shows that HBCUs matter, and that HBCU students are having a positive college experience, but they also have an unmet financial need,” UNCF CEO and president Michael L. Lomax said in a statement Tuesday. “Together, Kevin and KIPP have made an investment that will have a significant impact. We can’t thank them enough for their support.”
Ayan Robinson, a sophomore at Tuskegee University and freshman Lauryn Williams of Xavier University, are two Atlanta natives who both received the scholarships.
Four recipients are Morehouse College students: Latron Fleet, Iyvor Hypolite, Wayne Fuller and Willie Smalls.
Spelman College students Casey Adams and Briana Hardison, plus Clark Atlanta University freshman Jada Taylor, were also awarded with Hart Charity scholarships.
Hart held a surprise event for the winners in Los Angeles Monday, and even snapped a photo with the winners, giving a special shout-out to students from his hometown of Philadelphia.
“Education and knowledge are powerful,” Hart said in a statement. “I just wanted to do my part in providing opportunities for our future leaders, especially from my Philly hometown, and show support for HBCUs. This is just the beginning; trust me when I tell you there are a lot more kids who want to go to college who don’t have the money to make it happen.”
This is Hart’s second time making a donation to UNCF. In 2015, the comedian gave the organization $100,000 to support four students’ college educations.