Times are hard and people are realizing what an expensive necessity college is becoming to succeed in a competitive economy. Paying for school can be rough. Fortunately, federal financial aid is available to most students in the forms of grants and loans, and if that doesn’t cover it, there are scholarships out there for the twerkers!
Rapper Juicy J is offering one young woman the opportunity to twerk her way through college with a $50,000 scholarship. Juicy announced the scholarship on Aug. 31 via a tweet saying, “Twerk dat ass! #JuicyJScholarship contest Enter here! http://worldstarhiphop.com/scholarship #StayTrippy”.
The original tweet has since been deleted, but he legitimized it by partnering with Worldstar Hip Hop to create the Juicy J Scholarship Foundation. Contestants will compete in an official video-submission contest that will last until Sep. 30. Fans will vote the entire month of September and Juicy will pick the winner out of the top ten videos.
The rules are simple.
Ladies ages 18 to 25, who are currently enrolled in an accredited program and have a GAP of 1.5 or higher, can submit a short video on Worldstar Hip Hop telling or showing Juicy why they deserve the money. Twerking is encouraged but optional, and contestants must use Juicy’s new song “Scholarship” off his new album for some “inspiration.”
“Scholarship” offers a lot of twerkspirational lyrics like, “You a college chick, keep twerking baby might earn you a scholarship…Show me some, I might owe you some. Them bands waiting and I know you want ‘em, I’m tryna pay your student loans.”
Whether women want to admit it or not, most of us do like to twerk. Whether we are closet dancers or the badest on the floor, twerking happens. It happens all the time and it happens for free. However, is twerking a legitimate basis for a scholarship and should women be encouraged to twerk to pay for school? Opinions are varied, but many Old Dominion University students say no.
“It’s absolutely ridiculous,” sophomore Christina Peyton. “I would never twerk for a scholarship. I’m sorry, but usually they go off brains. If you twerk for a scholarship, I don’t think you deserve one.
Freshman Olivia Covington asked, “Why, why, why? I know college is expensive, but shaking my butt on camera for some rapper? I mean it’s a lot of money, but at the same time I have a reputation to uphold.”
Although there is a lot of negative campus feedback about the Juicy J Scholarship Foundation, some students feel that it is a legitimate way to earn a scholarship.
“I would definitely twerk something for a $50,000 scholarship. That’s two whole years! It’s a little degrading but to be honest it’s hard now, so you have to do what you have to do. It’s all about how you see it. Your perspective,” sophomore Adisola Oni said.
“It’s a bit strange, but it’s a way for students to earn money. I don’t feel like its wholly negative but I don’t feel like its positive either. If you’re going to twerk anyway, and if you’re okay with that kind of publicity with your name attached to it, I think you should go for it,” freshman Kele McKaigh said.
Whatever opinion we may have on Juicy’s scholarship, it is true that the product of any true scholarship is always positive; a college education.
“At the end of the day the person who gets that scholarship, they come and do something with it then its served its purpose,” junior Kam Anon said.
Many of the current contestants do not include any twerking in their submissions and instead spend the time telling Juicy why their story makes them deserving of the money. However, there are top videos that, along with the backstory, also feature the contestants twerking. Both types of videos are receiving high votes and it is a mystery as to which type of video will catch Juicy’s attention.
With so much time in recent decades spent on gaining gender equality, what does the fact that a scholarship strictly for women that accepts twerking as a qualification for entry mean for the current status of women in America? If this is the future standard, many ODU students believe that it doesn’t look good for women.
Junior Rebeca Perloff said that this scholarship does “nothing positive” for the status of women in America.
“I was disappointed. It’s kind of like telling women to degrade themselves to earn money,” freshman Selah Coleman said. “I wouldn’t want people looking at me and thinking ‘She’ll do anything for a piece of change.’ We have come to an all-time low really. This is what we [women] are really worth at this point. It’s not what we can do, what we’re doing in our community, our GPA.”
There are many factors to consider before entering for a chance to win the $50,000 scholarship. It’s a high risk contest with low probability of success. The cost of education is mounting, but eventually there comes a price that is too steep and too public to pay. Time will tell what the Juicy J Scholarship foundation will mean for the possibility of future scholarships like it and the status of women in America.