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The Living Legends Foundation Expands its Music Scholarship Programs to African American Students at HBCUs and PWIs

Students receiving Living Legends Foundation scholarships
Students receiving Living Legends Foundation scholarships

*The Living Legends Foundation (LLF) expands its music scholarship programs to African American students at Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and Predominately White Institutions (PWIs) who studied during the 2022-2023 school term at George Mason University, Pomona College, Hampton University, University of Southern California, and Yale University. Founded 32 years ago, the LLF is presenting $2,000 scholarships to each of five well-qualified recipients. Previous scholarships through the foundation have been presented to Texas Southern University and Shaw University, among others.

“This year’s Living Legends Foundation Scholarship and Awards recipients reflect the organization’s mission and purpose,” says Shannon A. Henderson, board member, and scholarship and awards co-chair of the Living Legends Foundation. “Each of the 2023 students has earned this distinct honor of recognition. The scholarships are provided to enhance their educational journey.”

Cheyenne DeGross
Cheyenne DeGross

Among this year’s scholarship recipients is George Mason University freshman Cheyenne DeGross, who is a communication major with a 3.8 GPA and an expected graduation date in 2026. She has interned at WJLA-TV in Arlington, Virginia, and is a broadcast trainee at Mason Cable Network in Fairfax, Virginia. “My career goal is to obtain employment soon after I leave college,” says DeGross, the president of the Tartans Minds Matter Club, where she served as a volunteer and community service worker. “I took a journalism class in my sophomore year of high school and fell in love. This led me to take an internship at WJLA-TV for my high school’s senior project. It was a great opportunity where I got to learn about broadcast news.”

Jazzmin Duncan
Jazzmin Duncan

Freshman Jazzmin Duncan, a media studies major at Pomona College in Claremont, California, has a 3.4 GPA and an expected graduation date in 2026. She is a contributor to The Post Newspaper of Galveston County in Texas and has been published in Light and Shadow Literary magazine. Her Congressional Awards include a Bronze Certificate. In addition, Duncan was named a Questbridge Scholar and is a recipient of a Scholastic Art and Writing Award. “I wish to share the cathartic sensation of being heard, through video journalism specifically. In an industry growing more digital, I plan to market myself as an up-and-coming digital media and culture journalist, documenting the robust underbellies of society, physical and electronic,” Duncan explains. “My ultimate goal is to say something for the people who can’t and to help others find their words. While continuing to work towards change on behalf of underrepresented citizens in my community, I hope to create a beautiful cacophony of stories, telling mine and opening the doors for others to do the same.”

Jordyn Kaila Isaacs
Jordyn Kaila Isaacs

Freshman Jordyn Kaila Isaacs is a journalism major at Hampton University, in Hampton, Virginia, where she is also on the Dean’s List with a 3.34 GPA. She is a writer and reporter with Hampton’s WHOV-TV, a staff writer with Hampton Script newspaper, and a reporter for the university’s radio station, WHOV-FM. “My leadership skills have allowed me to make a positive impact at Hampton University,” says Isaacs. “I’ve learned that it’s okay to constantly strive to be better because the sky’s the limit. By striving for greatness, you can set an example for others around you. Leaders inspire people and motivate them to perform at a higher level while embodying company values and culture.”

Maximillion Shearod
Maximillion Shearod

Maximillion Shearod is a Cognitive Science major with a focus on Musical Cognition at Yale University. He has a 3.73 GPA and an expected graduation date in 2025. He was an intern and mentee with Power2Inspire and a programming assistant with Silence The Shame. He is a Gates Scholar, Ron Brown Scholar, Jack Kent Cooke Foundation College Scholar, and a Questbridge National College Match Finalist. “I have found that music plays a large role in mental health, which piques my interest,” says Shearod. “The brain is the key to what makes music important to not only us as individuals, but the entire culture, and I want to delve into the music industry while I learn more about these topics.”

Joshua Wilson
Joshua Wilson

Junior Joshua Wilson of the University of Southern California is a Popular Music Performance major with a minor in Sports Media. His expected graduation date is May 2024. For four consecutive semesters, he has made the USC’s Dean’s List. He has worked as a roadie and travel assistant with The Love Music Group, LLC, and as an intern with VGN Bae Music Studios. His volunteer and community work included a role as a student ambassador at the USC Thornton School of Music. He participated in a contemporary popular music study project in London; has performed in a 60-member choir with Pentatonix at the Hollywood Bowl; and has also performed a musical tribute to multiple Grammy Award-winning recording artist Babyface. “For as long as I can remember, I have been privy to and a part of music creation,” says Wilson. “The business of music and entertainment is woven into the fabric of my everyday life. I believe what I have is a distinguishable backdrop for my desire to be in the entertainment industry as well as a front-row seat to the quest to create music while navigating the fluid terrain of the industry.”

The LLF’s Henderson adds that the new cohort of scholarship recipients represents a positive expansion and direction for the scholarship program. “Each recipient demonstrated integrity, innovative thinking, and the strategic capabilities to accomplish their life-long goals to succeed in the entertainment industry,” she notes. “It is apparent that these young students are well on their way to becoming future emulators in a global society that expects imminent success and to move the essence of the Living Legends Foundation forward. We salute this year’s awardees and congratulate them individually and collectively.”

“Many of our board and advisory board members have attended historically Black Colleges and Universities or Predominately White Institutions,” concludes David C. Linton, the Chairman of the Living Legends Foundation. “As alumni, we are proud to pay it forward to the new generations of music and entertainment professionals. Our goals in the next five years are to increase our fundraising efforts and to set up interactive mentorship opportunities for the students to reflect the ever-evolving changes in technology.”

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