The Zuri Adele Fellowship for HBCU Alumni

$376
12%
Raised toward our $3,000 Goal
4 Donors
35
days left
Project ends on January 01, at 12:00 AM PST
Project Owners

Support HBCU alumni voices and visions in the performing arts!

Today, HBCU alumni are underrepresented in entertainment and performing arts industries. Diversity, equity, and inclusion are actions that require reevaluation, introspection and transformation, and can no longer be relegated to buzzwords. The Zuri Adele Fellowship for HBCU Alumni, founded in 2016 by TFT alumna Zuri Adele to promote diverse storytelling and performance among MFA students at TFT, provides an annual award to a graduate of an HBCU pursuing their Masters in Fine Arts degree in any of UCLA TFT's programs. With your philanthropic support of this award, you can continue to move this vision forward in encouraging innovative new voices to be developed. 

Ashley Cleveland, Zuri Adele, Taylor Curry
Left to right: Ashley Cleveland, Zuri Adele, Taylor Curry

The HBCU Impact

The Historically Black College and University experience expands education beyond the teaching of westernized textbooks, approaching each subject from the African Diasporic perspective. This coalition of 107 accredited post-secondary institutions produce hundreds of thousands of graduates each year, united in their mission to provide a forum in exchanging ideas, philosophies and techniques, and promote the advancement of scholars of African descent across the world. The strong sense of self, combined with the communities that are developed in the process are vital to strengthening the collaboration of artistic cohorts in UCLA TFT’s world-class Master of Fine Arts program.

Zuri’s Story

Zuri Adele ’15 earned a BA in Drama from Spelman College and trained at the British American Drama Academy. She went on to complete her MFA in Acting at the UCLA School of Theater, Film and Television (TFT). She has taught at UCLA TFT and at the Oprah Winfrey Leadership Academy for Girls. Adele's professional credits include performing with Siti Company in Los Angeles productions of Lost in the Stars (2017) and the theater is a blank page (2018). Adele is currently a series regular on Freeform’s Good Trouble. Her winning portrayal of Black Lives Matter activist Malika has been hailed as an inspiring representation of women of color on TV. Zuri’s personal philanthropy and activism mirrors her Good Trouble character.

Left to right: Ulato Sam, Ashley Cleveland as Helen in "Helen"

The Zuri Adele Impact

Striving toward equity within a diverse array of aspiring performance artists is especially necessary at UCLA TFT. The social issues highlighted in the entertainment industry today require intentional and thoughtfully integrated solutions to overcome these perils. At UCLA TFT, The Zuri Adele Fellowship for HBCU Alumni is charting a path to bring together artists from a diverse array of backgrounds to learn, live and work at our academic institution, by alleviating the cost of receiving a prestigious MFA education. Through your generosity, you can elevate talented HBCU alumni to pursue careers in entertainment and diversify the industry, both on and off-screen. In terms of immediate impact, for every ten dollars given, a student can work one hour less in a work-study job to focus instead on their scholarship and training. With your help, we can make top-tier graduate fine arts education more accessible to HBCU alumni beginning with UCLA TFT.

Show your Blue and Gold pride and support for HBCU alumni to help students pursue their dream career in the entertainment and performing arts industries. Through your generosity, we would like to expand Zuri’s efforts and mission and take this award to new heights for generations to come! We hope to endow this fund so that it may provide funding in perpetuity for the next diverse voices; visit uclafoundation.org/disclosures for endowment management information.

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$55

55 Years of HBCUs

Celebrate 55 years of The Higher Education Act of 1965 that recognized HBCUs as a coalition of accredited post-secondary institutions united by a mission to provide a uniquely superior education primarily to students of African descent. HBCUs continue to be a source of great pride for the Black community and the entire nation.

$107

The Nation's 107 HBCUs

There are 107 Historically Black Colleges and Universities in the United States. For decades, these institutions have been dedicated to expanding education beyond the teaching of westernized textbooks, approaching each subject from the African Diasporic perspective.

$300

CARES Act Donation

In 2020 only, donors who itemize when filing their tax returns can benefit from an increase in the deduction limit up to 100% of a donor’s adjusted gross income for cash gifts. Even if you don't itemize, you will be allowed to take up to a $300 charitable gift deduction to reduce your tax liability.

$500

An Artist's Ally

By allowing students to work less hours in a work-study job, you are giving the gift of valuable time that will be devoted to furthering their creative process and materializing their vision.

$1,000

Champion of HBCU Voices

You are making higher education even more accessible to HBCU alumni with a gift to support 100 hours for a student to devote time furthering their creative process and materializing their unique vision.

$1,965

HBCU Homecoming

Honor the meaningful legacy of The Higher Education Act of 1965 that recognized HBCUs as a coalition of accredited post-secondary institutions united by a mission to provide a uniquely superior education to students of African descent. HBCUs continue to be a source of great pride for the Black community and the entire nation.

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