Words by Nick Slay

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We all know Malia Obama has her 1st class ticket to Harvard (she is a legacy thanks to her famous last name), but another famous name will be hitting those hollowed halls after her spin-off. Family friend Yara Shahidi, star of Black-ish and noted youth activist will also take the plunge into one of America’s most recognized learning institutions. That is after she finishes filming her first season of her spin-off series, Grown-ish set to premiere on ABC’s sister teen focused and streaming network, Freeform.

Headlining Grown-ish will parallel her real life transition to college and she’s excited for the opportunity. Yara who plays the titular character ‘Zoey Johnson’ will be embarking on new life experiences as college student which sounds very close to the premise of, A Different World. Where Lisa Bonet’s legendary, ‘Denise Huxtable’ character left The Cosby Show nest. Being able to live in a different world as a teenager who’s experiencing the same thing as Yara kind of gives her the ability to be her own ‘Holden Caufield.’ (We will pause here while you furiously try to remember your high school paper on, Catcher in the Rye).


Where most people would dread the idea of separating her real life journey from Zoey’s journey, yet she finds the whole thing fantastic. Shahidi who just won a Black Girls Rock award for her, ‘Let Girls Learn’ initiative also received a college recommendation letter from the famous first lady herself, Michelle Obama. Whatever happens Shahidi will have a bright future if you listen to her Black-ish co-star, Lawrence Fishburne. Fishburne was quoted as saying, “If she doesn’t become president, something is wrong. Speaking on how the young actress and youth activist gives him hope for the future.