By Hayden Wright
Rihanna has eight GRAMMY awards, 12 American Music Awards, 12 Billboard Music Awards and four MTV Video Music Awards — as well as another honor from an unexpected institution. Harvard University has named the Anti singer Humanitarian of the Year for various philanthropic efforts around the globe. S. Allen Counter, director of the Harvard Foundation, explained how Rihanna has earned the Ivy League citation.
“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,” he said. “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.”
Rihanna also raised awareness about HIV prevention during a trip to Barbados last year: She and Prince Harry took HIV tests together to recognize World AIDS Day.
Rihanna will accept the Peter J. Gomes Humanitarian Award at the Harvard’s Sanders Theatre next Tuesday, February 28.