Who is Robert Smith? He’s a big deal.
Robert Frederick Smith is an American businessman, investor and philanthropist. A former chemical engineer and investment banker, he is the Founder, Chairman and CEO of private equity firm Vista Equity Partners. In 2018, Smith was ranked by Forbes as the 163rd richest person in America. He was No. 480 on Forbes 2018 list of the world’s billionaires, with a net worth of US$4.4 billion.
As if his long list of accomplishments couldn’t be more impressive, not only did this philanthropist donate 1.5 million dollars to Morehouse College, he also has committed to paying off about $40 million dollars of student loan debt for the class of 2019.
Talk about securing generational wealth.
While the importance of a college education cannot be refuted, graduates are often saddled with student loan debt after graduation. Graduates often have to delay purchasing homes, starting families and businesses. Any expendable cash usually goes somewhere between trying to survive and paying down a mountain of debt that almost seems impossible to get out of. This gift means that a whole generation of black men will be able to get a head start in securing financial freedom they would not have otherwise without this gift.
I wonder what would happen if more billionaires used their wealth to tackle the student debt crises. Black millennials could certainly use some student loan assistance to level the already unbalanced playing field. Robert Smith definitely gave the gift that will keep on giving.
Congrats Morehouse, Spelman and CAU graduates, class of 2019!