Black Female Cadets Make History At West Point Graduation
34 black female cadets from West Point's Class of 2019 pose at the U.S. Military Academy in West Point, New York.
Cadet Hallie H. Pound/U.S. Army via AP

Black Women Cadets Make History At West Point Graduation

Yes, #BlackGirlMagic.

A record number of black female cadets are set to graduate from West Point (The United States Military Academy). After completing four years of education and "testing their limits," 34 black women will be walking across the stage at the 2019 commencement ceremony for the first time in the school's 217-year history.

Earlier this month, the black female cadets came together for a pre-graduation group photo. Little did they know, the photos of them in traditional Old Corps uniforms with ceremonial sabers would make their rounds on social media.

“My hope when young Black girls see these photos is that they understand that regardless of what life presents you, you have the ability an fortitude to be a force to be reckoned with,” shared one of the cadets, Tiffany Welch-Baker, in an interview with Because Of Them We Can.

Although West Point admitted its first black cadet until 1870, the academy didn’t graduate its first black cadet until the Reconstruction in 1877. In 1979, Vincent K. Brooks was made the first black captain of the Corps of Cadets. In 2017, Simone Askew became the first Black woman to lead the Corps of Cadets.

Senior cadet Stephanie Riley told Associated Press in another interview: “I just showed myself and those who thought I couldn’t do it initially that yes, I can. And not just, ‘Yes, I can.’ I can show other little girls that yes, you can come to West Point. Yes, you can do something that maybe the rest of your peers aren’t actually doing. And yes, you can be different from the rest of the group.”

The class of 2019 includes a total of 223 women, another milestone since the first female cadets' graduation in 1980. The total number of graduation African Americans doubled to 110, while the number of graduating Latinos became the largest, 88, in the academy's history. West Point also appointed Lt. Gen. Darryl A. Williams as its first black superintendent in July 2018.

Not only will West Point be graduating its 5,000th female cadet, but it will also have its highest number of female Hispanic graduates, 19. The commencement ceremony is set for Saturday, May 25, with Vice President Mike Pence delivering the commencement speech.

Congratulations to the black ladies of West Point's graduating Class of 2019!

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Dimitrios Kambouris

Rihanna Stuns At Fenty Pop-Up Event In New York City

That Rihanna reign just won’t let up.

Less than a month after launching her Fenty collection in Paris, Rihanna is expanding her pop-up shop to New York City. The Grammy winner attended the NYC opening at The Webster SOHO Tuesday (June 18) sporting a hot pink mini-dress and freshly done auburn-colored braids, complemented by turquoise accessories.

Rihanna's size-inclusive luxury clothing line comes just in time for summer with brightly colored bodycon dresses, graphic T-shirts, snakeskin heels, and glitzy accessories, according to Billboard.

The first installment of the Fenty collection, showcasing structured denim looks, corset dresses, strappy spiral sandals, pleated pants and fanny packs, became available for sale via Fenty.com on May 19.

Rihanna outlined her unconventional design vision to the  T, The New Times Style Magazine last month.“I want to be as disruptive as possible,” she explained of breaking free from the conventional fashion schedule. “The brand is not traditional. There is no runway show. It's a new way of doing things because I believe that this is where fashion is going to go eventually."

The NYC Fenty pop-up shop, which is described as a “two-story immersive experience,” will be open to the public from Jun 19 until Jun 30.

See photos below.

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Ed Sheeran Taps Cardi, 50 Cent, H.E.R. And More For New Album

Ed Sheeran is commissioning a star-studded roster for his upcoming album, No.6 Collaborations Project. 50 Cent, Cardi B, Khalid, Meek Mill, H.E.R., Travis Scott, Stormzy, Young Thug, Justin Bieber, Chance the Rapper and PNB Rock are among the packed list of collaborations.

The British pop crooner released the track list last month, but debuted the full list of features via Instagram Tuesday (June 18).

Sheeran teams with Chance the Rapper and PNB Rock for the recently released single “Cross Me,” and Bieber on an acoustic offering of his new single, “I Don’t Care.”

“I’m a huge fan of all of the artists I worked with on the album,” the singer-songwriter said in a statement according to Rolling Stone. “Whether I’ve been following them since the beginning of their careers, or had their albums on repeat, they’re artists that inspire me and all bring something special to each track. Can’t wait for you to hear it!”

No. 6 Collaborations Project is due out July 6.

See the track list below.

 

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Thanks to all the amazing artists I’ve worked with on this record for sharing your talent with me. No.6 Collaborations Project comes out on July 12, hope you like it as much as I do @travisscott @thegr8khalid @camila_cabello @iamcardib @chancetherapper @pnbrock @stormzy @yebbasmith @justinbieber @eminem @50cent @youngthug @theuglygram @ellamai @paulolondra @santandave @hermusicofficial @meekmill @artisthbtl @skrillex @brunomars @chrisstapleton

A post shared by Ed Sheeran (@teddysphotos) on Jun 18, 2019 at 11:06am PDT

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XXXTentacion Documentary Trailer Released, Fans Mark One-Year Anniversary Of Rapper’s Death

Fans will soon get a behind-the-scenes looks at the life of XXXTentacion.  To commemorate the one-year anniversary of his death, the slain rapper’s estate announced a new documentary and forthcoming posthumous album, Spin reports.

The chilling documentary trailer released Tuesday (June 18), includes an eerie message from the Florida native born, Jahseh Dwayne Onfroy.

“There’s definitely a difference between Jahseh Onfroy and XXXTentacion,” he says in the clip. “This is the story, this is the full story. And this is the last time I will tell it.”

XXXTentacion’s mother, Cleopatra Bernard,  marked the somber anniversary by sharing a photo of their final phone call, which took place hours before he was shot and killed.

 

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My hearts forever shattered 💔 6/18/18 last phone call.

A post shared by @ cleo_ohsojazzy on Jun 17, 2019 at 9:20pm PDT

Fans and fellow artists shared dedications to XXXTentacion on social media, and others flocked to the Florida  mausoleum where he’s buried.

One year ago 💔#LLJ #LLj🕊 #xxxtentacion pic.twitter.com/P6IT3sDGSu

— AssassinLord444🧛🏼‍♂️ (@AssassinLord44) June 17, 2019

tomorrow will mark the day , X life was taken from him. you miss you man.

I want to link up tomorrow @ a park in play music & smoke for jah ! if you in California! Pull up ! Let’s barbecue let’s have fun ! we miss you jah ! #xxxtentacion

— sincerely, tokyo 🎌 (@madeintyo) June 17, 2019

i can’t even begin to believe its been a year??? where the hell did time go? no, it can’t have been a year already😭 miss him so much. but i know he’s still with us. i really can feel it. his energy. his name will live FOREVER. also... here’s my fave edit... #xxxtentacion pic.twitter.com/DxC7dD2od9

— sabina!-🦋 (@fvcknxxx) June 18, 2019

The 20-year-old recording artist was gunned down in South Florida on June 18, 2018. Six months later, XXXTentacion’s estate released his third studio album, Skins. He went on to win a posthumous American Music Award and BET Award.

Watch the documentary trailer in the video above.

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