You may have your gripes with him, but President Obama has proven he's still the hip, young president we elected by choosing an extremely cool, young new education adviser. One whose resume just happens to include belly-dancing, making music videos, and recording duets with Wyclef Jean. Yup, that would be world-famous pop star Shakira. And while most Americans tend to only know her as "that 'Hips Don't Lie' chick," she's actually got some serious creds that make her a very smart pick for the President's Advisory Commission on Educational Excellence for Hispanics.
Specifically, Shaki's got a long-standing history of education reform activism, having started the Barefoot Foundation in 1995 to fund schools in Haiti, South Africa, and her native Colombia. She's also a UN Goodwill Ambassador, like Angelina Jolie.
When discussing her new position, Shakira said ...
This is a tremendous honor for me. Latino youth are the fastest-growing group in America, yet more Latino children are living in poverty—6.1 million in 2010—than children of any other racial or ethnic group. As I have seen in my own Foundation work, the only road out of poverty is education.
Amazing, I love it! She definitely knows from personal experience how to approach the situation Obama is hoping to tackle. What's more, she has the kind of global reach and mass appeal to really get something done. I just hope people don't get hung up on the fact that she's best known in the U.S. for her pop career. Kind of like how Angelina Jolie got some flak for her involvement with the UN, because she's a celeb. But that shouldn't matter, because both women do really know what they're doing. They just happen to have star power, too, meaning they have the opportunity to make even more of a difference.
What do you think about Shakira being named education adviser?
Image via Audrey Pilato/Flickr