Jan. 22, 2013
/PRNewswire/ -- Actor-comedian
, co-star of NBC's
Guys With Kids
, hosts the 34
UNCF An Evening of Stars ® Educating our Future Presented by Target.
The show premieres nationwide on
Saturday, January 26
(check local listings for stations and times) and airs on BET Networks on
Sunday, January 27, 2013
10:00 p.m. EST
. The nationally televised variety show focuses public attention on America's need for more African American college graduates and UNCF's work getting students to and through college.
The show features Grammy-Award winner and founder of the New Look Foundation, Usher Raymond, presenting a four-year
college scholarship to
high school senior,
. Additionally, superstars
will present scholarships to deserving college and college-bound students.
The national audience will be electrified by performances and appearances by some of the hottest names in entertainment including
Chaka Khan, Yolanda Adams, Charlie Wilson, Keyshia Cole, Trey Songz, Tyrese Gibson, Melanie Fiona, Eric Benet, Tracee Ellis Ross, Keenan
and many more.
"I hope everybody tunes in and donates from the bottom of their hearts and the bottom of their pockets," said Anderson. "Unfortunately, over 60,000 students apply for scholarships and financial aid every year and UNCF is able to award scholarships to just 15,000 who need help going to college. That's why I'm a part of what UNCF is doing and I'm here for the long run."
"UNCF is delighted that stars like Usher,
have agreed to make our cause their cause," said UNCF president and CEO
Michael L. Lomax
, Ph.D., "performing for the
UNCF An Evening of Stars
national audience and introducing UNCF's "rising stars" -- the high-achieving students who, thanks to UNCF, are getting the education they need to compete in the 21
century economy. The country is facing a crisis in African American education, and UNCF, BET and our galaxy of rising and established stars are determined to do something about it."
"We are very excited to be a part of this inspirational night," says BET Networks Chairman and CEO
. "Historically black colleges and universities hold a special and important role in the African American community and we are honored to help raise funds and awareness to support the education of the next generation of leading African American professionals."
UNCF, the country's largest and most effective minority education organization, supports the education of more than 60,000 students each year. A recent study by UNCF's Patterson Research Institute showed that UNCF's 38 member historically black colleges and universities (HBCUs) out-perform many non-HBCUs at enrolling and graduating low-income students. UNCF's largest scholarship program, the Gates Millennium Scholars Program, has a 90 percent graduation rate among its 13,000 low-income minority students, a rate significantly higher than the national college graduation rate.