Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

Shakira appointed to education board by President Obama

shakira.jpg
shakira-2.jpg
rexfeatures_838059br.jpg

She's known the world over for her incredible hip-swivelling moves and unusual song lyrics, but Shakira's talents extend well beyond a dexterous body and ability to smash the Billboard 100.

The Grammy award-winning star has spent the past 16 years reaching out to children in poverty in her native Colombia and other regions. Now she adds another bow to her arrow, with a prestigious role on Barack Obama's advisory board on education for Hispanics.

Obama named Shakira - or Shakira Isabel Mebarak Ripoll, as she is formally known - to the committee yesterday (5 October), along with three other people.

It is hoped the singer will be able to use her extensive knowledge of aid work and working with children to help America's estimated 11 million Hispanic public school students in achieving academic success.

According to White House figures, only around half of this group finish their High School diplomas on time, and those that do complete it are half as likely to be prepared for college as their peers.

Shakira will now join other members of the committee in advising Obama and US education secretary Arne Duncan on ways to turn this situation around.

A UNICEF Goodwill Ambassador, Shakira set up the Barefoot Foundation in 1995. The charity helps around 6,000 children with schools and educational projects in Colombia, South Africa, and Haiti.

In 2005, she became a founding member of Latin America in Solidarity Action, a coalition of artists and business leaders seeking to promote integrated early childhood public policies.

In her UN role, the 34-year-old promotes the expansion and improvement of comprehensive early childhood care and education across the world.

Referring to the appointment of Shakira and the others named with her, Obama said: "I am grateful that these impressive individuals have chosen to dedicate their talents to serving the American people at this important time for our country. I look forward to working with them in the months and years ahead."

Related

Best-closing-lines.jpg

The best 100 closing lines from books

Rihanna-Armani-Jeans-2.jpg

First look: Rihanna's Armani video

hero-ketchup.jpg

10 unusual food bans

Comments

More

Scarlett Johansson on the “degrading and awful” photo hack

Photographs of the actor were stolen from her email account

by Amy Swales
30 Mar 2017

Hold the phone: there’s been a huge Buffy the Vampire Slayer reunion

Angel or Spike?

by Kayleigh Dray
30 Mar 2017

Victoria Beckham to unleash her inner Posh Spice in Carpool Karaoke

She’s not such an innocent girl

by Kayleigh Dray
30 Mar 2017

The best A-list Instagrams from the week so far

From Cara Delevingne's fangirl moment to John Legend's London surprise

by Nicola Colyer
29 Mar 2017

From Will & Grace to Buffy: when cult TV and film casts reunite

The cast of Will & Grace are back together again...

29 Mar 2017

Friends fans, this is who was originally supposed to play Joey

How you doin’?

by Kayleigh Dray
29 Mar 2017

FGM victim recalls being asked "if she can orgasm" by Jeremy Hunt

"This man is the Secretary of State for Health but he had no idea about FGM"

by Hayley Spencer
29 Mar 2017

Emma Thompson nearly walked off film set over weight comments

The actor has taken a stand over the toxic body image culture in the industry

29 Mar 2017

GBBO’s Selasi takes Piers Morgan to task over Mary Berry’s spag bol

Nobody insults our Bezza and gets away with it

by Kayleigh Dray
29 Mar 2017

Teacher supports bullied schoolgirl by styling her hair the same way

Be the change you wish to see.

by Moya Crockett
29 Mar 2017