Class is back in session and British rapper AJ Tracey is looking to help the next generation of Black scholars achieve their goals. AJ Tracey has reportedly teamed up with St. Peter’s College, one of the constituent colleges of Oxford University, to launch a scholarship fund for Black students. For three years, scholars within the program will receive mentorship opportunities and £40,000 to help cover their costs. AJ Tracey says that the innovative scholarship program will help address the “historic underrepresentation” of Black students at the institution.
“I think, in general, for anyone who doesn’t understand why Black people who have managed to become successful want to help Black kids, it should be self-explanatory. The whole country is catered towards white people and we’re just trying to level the playing field by helping Black kids,” he told The Guardian.
“I truly believe that I had the potential to go [to Oxford or Cambridge]…But it was just understood that if you’re from an impoverished upbringing or ethnic background it’s very hard to get in. Even if you’re intelligent, even if you know you can get those grades, it just feels out of reach.”
Ultimately, AJ Tracey hopes that this venture will “inspire people to think, ‘AJ Tracey’s cool, I listen to his music and he’s from the same kind of background as me. And if he cares about that stuff, maybe I have the right to want to go there.’”