George Zimmerman

Trayvon Martin’s friend gets scholarship offer


Rachel Jeantel June 26, 2013 Photo / AP  - Orlando Sentinel Jacob Langston, PoolWASHINGTON (AP) — While some looked at murder trial witness Rachel Jeantel and saw either a defiant young woman or a victim, Tom Joyner looked at her and saw potential.

The nationally syndicated radio personality and philanthropist says he was touched by Jeantel, who spent two days testifying in the trial of George Zimmerman about her last conversation with her friend Trayvon Martin.

In fact, Joyner was so moved that he has offered to pay for Jeantel to attend the historically black college of her choice.

He explained the offer in an open letter to Jeantel and “all the young people in this country who, through no fault of their own, find yourself living in underserved communities and not yet figuring out your way in this world.”

“I realized a hug wasn’t enough,” Joyner wrote.

The letter was posted Wednesday on BlackAmericaWeb.com.

A spokeswoman for REACH Media, the parent company of Joyner’s radio show and other businesses, did not immediately respond to a request Wednesday for an interview with Joyner or comment. Jeantel’s attorney, Rod Vereen, said Wednesday he could not immediately reach Jeantel to discuss a request for comment.

Jeantel was the last person to talk to the 17-year-old before he was fatally shot in a February 2012 confrontation with Zimmerman, who claimed he shot Martin in self-defense. Zimmerman, 29, was acquitted last week of second-degree murder and manslaughter charges.

Jeantel, 19, has yet to graduate from high school. In order to accept Joyner’s offer, she would have to get a diploma and take college entrance exams. Joyner also offered to provide her with tutors to accomplish those goals.

“We are committed to meeting you where you are, helping you to get your GED and prepping you for the historically black college or university of your choice,” Joyner said.

Joyner has supported historically black colleges and students who attend them through the Tom Joyner Foundation. According to its website, the foundation has raised $65 million to support more than 29,000 students attending historically black colleges and universities, many of which have their roots in 19th century efforts to educate newly freed slaves.

Joyner wrote that he’d only ask in return that Jeantel try to make a difference in someone’s life.

“Time and time again, we watch our young people get written off, tossed aside or put at the end of the line because no one wants to give them a chance,” he said.

Joyner has provided full scholarships in the past to others, including Genarlow Wilson, who at age 17 was sentenced to 10 years in prison for engaging in sex acts with a 15-year-old girl. Wilson’s conviction was ultimately overturned by the Georgia Supreme Court, and he graduated from Morehouse College in May with a degree in sociology.

SUZANNE GAMBOA

Source: AP

Copyright 2013 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

Share this post!
Facebook Twitter Linkedin Email Pinterest

Comments

tab  
Patricia Nelson says:

SPEAK UP TALK LOUDLEY,SAY YOUR WORDS , NO MUMBLING, SHE IS GOING TO TAKE THE MONEY AND RUN. NO COLLEGE ON THIS.

   
LegalBrief says:

I’m sure “Harvard” can’t wait!!!

   
Patricia Nelson says:

I DID NOT SHUT UP! EVERYONE KEEP TALKING.

   
Patricia Nelson says:

VERY POOR IN ARE HOUSE BACK IN THE DAY. SMART ASS .

   
Patricia Nelson says:

BLACK WHITE WHATEVER GHETTO.

   
Patricia Nelson says:

LOW RENT AS WE CALL IT.

   
Patricia Nelson says:

SCHOLARSHIP YEALLY?

   
Patricia Nelson says:

MY PARENT MAKES MONEY I JUST SPEND IT, REALLY? HER WORDS.

   
Patricia Nelson says:

It has nothing to do about race.

   
Patricia Nelson says:

Well I will keep my mouth shut on this.

   
LoveBunny says:

It would be great of she takes the scholarship offer.

   

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *