Will.i.am to Perform in China Promoting Educational Exchanges

Posted August 2nd, 2011 at 1:40 am (UTC-5)
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The United States says it has tapped Grammy Award-winning musician will.i.am to headline a concert in China this year promoting educational and cultural exchanges between the two countries.

The popular hip-hop artist, a founder of the Black Eyed Peas, will perform along with other U.S. and Chinese pop stars at an unspecified date. The State Department says the show is being organized by a private group that provides scholarships for American high schoolers to study in China.

The department said the event is intended to promote an effort by President Obama known as the “100,000-Strong Initiative.” The initiative aims to dramatically increase the number of Americans studying in China and to make those opportunities available to a wider range of Americans.

Will.i.am is quoted as saying children from underserved communities seldom have the chance to study abroad, and that he wants to change that.

The State Department says private donors have pledged more than $7 million toward the initiative, while the Chinese government has offered 20,000 scholarships.