Lady Jaguars: 10 Famous Women Who Attended Spelman College
Spelman College, a historically black women’s college located in Atlanta, Georgia is the crème de la crème. With a host of illustrious alumni, Spelman has been ranked number one for five consecutive years on the list of top HBCUs. Here are a few famous ladies who have Spelman College listed on their resumes.
Most of us know her as the author who wrote The Color Purple; but before fame, she was awarded a scholarship to Spelman in 1961. During her tenure there, the author became an activist in Civil Rights movements in the state of Georgia. It is said that officials at the college weren’t supportive of her stance, and in 1963, she left Spelman for Sarah Lawrence College in New York.
Keisha Knight Pulliam
The House of Payne actress graduated with a bachelor’s degree in sociology in 2001. While attending Spelman, she became a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority. In 2011, she founded Kamp Kizzy at Spelman College, as a means for empowering young girls.
The youngest child of the late Civil Rights leader, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., Bernice is an ordained minister. She graduated in 1985 with a bachelor’s degree in psychology. She is also a member of Alpha Kappa Alpha sorority, and passed the State Bar of Georgia. In 2007, she returned to Spelman to announce the “Be A King” scholarship in honor of her late mother, Coretta Scott King.
Before she was giving us the scoop on our favorite celebrities, “Access Hollywood” correspondent Shaun Robinson graduated from Spelman in 1984. She has used her fame to help raise money for the college since graduating.
As a writer and producer behind shows like Soul Food and Lincoln Heights, it was while attending Spelman that Kathleen realized her talent. Landing an interview with the Detroit Free Press newspaper, she worked there after graduating in 1972, before ditching a blossoming career in journalism to attend Columbia University and study film.
“Momma, what you doing?” How can we ever forget Adrienne as the character of Juanita, the single mother of Jody in the movie Baby Boy? Before finding success as an actress in the ’90s, Adrienne graduated magna cum laude from Spelman in 1985. She attended classes during the day, while performing at night. She is also a member of Delta Sigma Theta sorority.
You’ve seen the current ESPY awards producer and actress in the movie Fighting Temptations. LaTanya entered Spelman in 1971, and quickly joined the college’s theater. While attending Spelman, she met her future husband, Samuel L. Jackson (a Morehouse man). She graduated in 1974 with a bachelor’s degree in drama. She has since served on the college’s board of trustees. She also received an Honorary Doctorate of Fine Arts in April of 2012.
Famous for her roles in popular ’70s shows like Maude and Good Times, Esther attended Spelman in the early ’40s. She was also a member of Zeta Phi Beta sorority.
Cassi Davis is another House of Payne actress who graduated from Spelman, although she originally dropped out— just one credit shy of graduation. She left college and began her career in entertainment, gaining credits in movies and shows such as School Daze and Living Single. Realizing the importance of education years later, the actress returned to Spelman in 2008 and completed her degree in November of that year.
The HGTV host graduated cum laude in 1994 with a bachelor’s degree in theater arts. She has also used her fame to help raise money for the college since graduating.
All photos courtesy of WENN.com unless otherwise noted.
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