Winfrey makes $600,000 scholarship pledge

AP, Nov. 11, 2002

CLEVELAND (AP) — While giving the keynote speech at Cuyahoga Community College’s scholarship luncheon, talk show host Oprah Winfrey offered to match the $600,000 US the event was expected to raise for scholarships.

She said her donation was a tribute to the dual forces that have shaped her life.

“All that I am or will ever become is because of my spiritual foundation and my educational foundation,” Winfrey said Friday.

College president Jerry Sue Thornton was as surprised as everyone else.

“We had no idea,” Thornton said. “This means so much. We had to turn away students who wanted to come in the fall because we didn’t have enough scholarship money.”

The two-year college has more than 20,000 students. Winfrey has been friends for 15 years with Rev. Otis Moss, a Baptist minister who co-sponsored the luncheon.

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