May 28th, 2012
12:35 PM ET

Should P. Diddy's son return $54,000 college scholarship?

Justin Combs worked hard in high school to improve his football game and earn a 3.75 GPA . He recently received a $54,000 merit-based scholarship to UCLA, where he'll play football.

In April, Forbes named Justin Combs' dad,  Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, the wealthiest artist in hip-hop. Some say the family should return Justin's scholarship, arguing that Combs should pay for his son's education and taxpayer money should go to students with greater financial need. Other say Justin Combs earned the scholarship through his grades and athletic ability, and deserves to keep it.

What do you think? Should the Combs family keep, return or donate the money? Should students with wealthy parents have access to merit-based scholarships and financial aid?

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Filed under: College • Economy • Financial aid • Issues • Perry's Principles • Sports
soundoff (635 Responses)
  1. mike

    I think the kid and P Diddy can do no wrong whether they accept it or not. They donate millions already, and they will probably donate $54,000 somewhere else anyway.

    However – I can't believe the school's balls to issue this scholarship based on merit. 3.75 in HS is very good but it's also pretty common. At least in magnet schools throughout Philadelphia. (There are 3 great Philadelphia High Schools that have 100's of students that have 3.75 or better).

    I can't wait to see the school try to justify this over other children. I'm thinking they issued this because JR probably goes to a very highly ranked HS. A 3.75 is not always a 3.75. Just like someone who throws 40 touchdowns at Alabama is "better" than someone who throws 44 touchdowns at Boise State.

    Who ever said life was fair anyway?

    May 29, 2012 at 11:40 am |
  2. Steve

    This is a football scholarship. This is not an academic scholarship. The school is not going to give the scholarship to a "needy" student. If the scholarship is refused, the scholarship will go to the best player that UCLA can get. That could be a black/white kid from the suburbs or a poor black/white kid. This is not about academics. This is about football.

    May 29, 2012 at 11:35 am |
  3. thinkifyoucan

    First off, 54k in merit scholarships is not enough information. What are the requisites for these scholarships? How many are exclusive to minorities? How many different scholarships did he recieve? How are they Funded? How many applied for these scholarships? What were his SAT/ACT results? I see his GPA was 3.75, but what is the quality of his school? Where does that rank for both general student body vs. minority groups? How are classes weighed? Was the GPA weighed or was it base? How many honors or advanced placement classes did he take? Did he take and AP tests, if so, what were his scores? Where does the Scholarship money apply: All expensess, Tuition only, Room and Board, Books? Who is paying for the rest of his expenses? (Bill Gates is reportedly not giving his wealth to his kids, only a 200K in starting off cash and kicking them out the door, meaning they are as well off as most upper middle class kids who's parents are funding their education and paying their expenses, etc.)

    These questions need to be answered before any intelligent answer can be provided.

    Basically, if all the questions are answered with a favorable response, then he earned it and should keep it. The furture of the scholarships should be questioned and evaluated, possible all scholarships should be based on need or applicants should be weighed on family income, even if family claims they will not be providing support. However, if the above questions, when answered, reveal evidence that more qualified or equally qualified-less wealthy students were denied any funding because of his take, then let the lawsuits begin.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:59 am |
  4. Kermit

    Justin earned the scholarship, his father did not. Justin did his homework and his workouts on the field. His father did not. The 54k is for Justins future. Good on you Justin. Enjoy what you have earned. Make the most of it and stand on your own two legs.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:49 am |
  5. chimama

    I would not be surprised if half the people who are saying that a 3.7GPA is nothing have never achieved GPA close to it. I'm not sure why race is an issue here. This is not the first time the child of someone wealthy has received a substantial scholarship, so why is this a story?

    May 29, 2012 at 10:48 am |
  6. MaryB

    It's up to the boy to accept it or not. He certainly earned it. But it would be more admirable if he donated the money to someone deserving who could not afford college. His father could probably buy his son a college.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:46 am |
  7. Bob

    Does anyone think college football players are anything other than minor league professional football players?

    May 29, 2012 at 10:46 am |
  8. bibleverse1

    You do not return anything you earn through effort and diligence. No one should ever be ashamed of working for anything. Those that steal those that cheat should feel shame. If he decides to return the Scholarship it would be a demonstration of great character and a good start for a humanitarian. If I was assured the money would go to another student I would give it up. I wish people would stop making the rich villians instead of seeking the wisdom and knowledge to gain wealth.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:44 am |
  9. MrsB

    When I was in high school, I had a 4.0 GPA and graduated 2nd in a class of 400-something kids. I applied for scholarships all over the place, and didn't receive ANY. I think this young man should return it; I thought most scholarships were based on need anyway? My family was an average US family- Dad worked two jobs, Mom worked one, and I was the first i my family to go to college. This young man is old enough to know that he doesn't need this scholarship and plenty of others do. He should donate it or something. I also don't think a 3.75 GPA is all that noteworthy. That's As and Bs I believe, and an alright job, but certainly not worthy of 54,000.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:37 am |
    • MrsB

      I just want to emphasize that I'm not saying he should give it back because his family has more than enough money (although they do) but my main point is that when are As and Bs worth 54 grand??? To me, that's not earned.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:39 am |
      • Peggy

        MrsB, it's $54K when the school says it. The school has the right to set whatever thresh hold they want to. If the young man met those criteria then he deserves the award. It is as simple as that. Did he meet the criteria? According to the school he did, so what's the discussion about?

        May 29, 2012 at 10:42 am |
    • Mardam

      You had a 4.0 GPA and still don't understand what the word "merit" means.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:39 am |
    • chimama

      So he should return it because you didn't receive a scholarship?

      May 29, 2012 at 10:50 am |
  10. Mardam

    This is a stupid question. CNN is a stupid network for asking it. This country is getting stupider by the day.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:36 am |
  11. Steve

    He earned it. Let him keep it. Telling him to give it back would be just like telling his dad to donate to charity all the money he made producing his last album. Nobody expects him to do that.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:35 am |
  12. Helen A

    Okay I am a little confused here.... This young man applied himself in sports and in the classroom, got a scholarship (which I believe HE EARNED) and some want him to give it back because his father has money. What happen to work hard for your success and don't expect something for nothing. What are we teaching this young man? Don't work hard, you can always get the money from your Daddy. I think this is the wrong message and there shouldn't be a public debate about it. Keep your scholarship your earned and deserved it Keep up the good work.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • chimama

      well put

      May 29, 2012 at 10:54 am |
  13. sdffa11

    wow, people can be so petty. why should diddy's kid be punished for who his father is and how much money he makes?

    if he earned the scholarship, its not right for anyone to suggest the money should go towards more needy families. if another family couldn't send their kid to college because of not receiving this scholarship, that family only needs to blame themselves and the kid for not trying harder.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:32 am |
  14. MMm

    If UCLA felt he earned it, I believe he should keep it. Why should he have to ride on daddy's coat tails when UCLA is saying he earned this on his own? Regardless if you think his GPA is high enough or not, it met UCLA's standards for a scholarship.

    I'd love to see Sean Combs donate an equal amount of money to an education charity or scholarship fund in his son's name.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:32 am |
    • You know...

      I wouldn't doubt that the university extended the scholarship in hopes that his dad does open his wallet for either a scholarship fund or maybe some new additions to the campus.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:37 am |
  15. Just saying

    Nothing against the lad, but since when is a 3.75 worthy of an acedemic scholarship? There are probably a heck of a lot more students with better grades that have gotten squat from UCLA ! Sports scholarship[s need to go !

    May 29, 2012 at 10:26 am |
    • Peggy

      Just to educate some on why some blacks score so poorly on white tests, and that is because whites make up most test based on their white information, background, and white experiences. If blacks got to make up the tests based on their black information, background, and black experiences, I assure you most white will score poorly. There is so much information about whites that my white friends know, but I don't know...but there is even more information that I know as a black woman that my white friends have no clue about. Perosnlly, I don't think it's fair to make blacks compete on the same level as whites in a white world, but those are the breaks. Many blacks must be better than their white counterparts to exceed. That's the world we live in. It's unfortunate that many bloggers don't have a clue about real life realities for minorities, yet they like to be the voice of reason. Until you walk a mile in a minority's shoes, I don't want to hear it.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:38 am |
  16. steve brown

    If he earned it, is a LEGAL citizen the families financial position should not be a factor. Others had exactly the same opportunity and did not produce the results.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:24 am |
    • Peggy

      Amen! Basically some are saying since Justin's father is rich, Justin does not have the right to make his own way. Here's a kid trying to do just that and what does he get; resistence. If he didn't make his own way folks would have something negative about that too. I commend the kid for having an A list celebrity as a father, and yet handling his business in school.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:40 am |
  17. Citizen_76

    humm...this kid plays a sport and has good grades. At the end of the day he and his father put thier pants on one leg at a time. If your kid didn't get a scholarship or you can't send your kid to college that is no one's fault but your own as thier parent. Who said college was suppose to be for everyone. I never went to college but I did go to a trade school that was paid by myself. It's college not public education. I'm sorry for the 4.0 student that didn't get a chance to go to college but it's not the end of the world. From what I'm reading the military academies are begging for students. Thats a free college. ?!?!?!?

    May 29, 2012 at 10:21 am |
  18. Phil

    I say the kid earned it! Give it to him!

    I'm going through all of this now, trying to get my kids through college. I don't make P-Diddy money, but there's lots of programs my kids don't qualify for. Then, a lot of (if not most of) the scholarships apply a "need" basis to determine if the kid can get the award. A couple of full ride's didn't come through (for my eldest who had a 4.0 through HS and a 2100 SAT) and the problem was likely becasue of my earnings.

    Some colleges he looked at are in the $50,000 to $60,000 range (per year). We simply couldn't afford it. He's going to a state college. The kid my kid tutored through AP Calculus got a full ride at the most exlusive school in the state. Go figure.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:14 am |
  19. remarkble

    Every child deserves the right to accomplish something on their own merit. Kudos to him for his GPA, using a gift he has and being willing to pursue a higher education. This isn't about his father, this is about a successful young man who shouldn't have to live in his fathers shadow. Maybe given the chance to excel his parents may find reason for endowments or scholarships in their son's name that far exceed returning the scholarship their son earned.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:12 am |
  20. Shaney

    While so many say he should "LET" P.Diddy pay for is tuition nobody has thought of the fact the child can't make the adult do anything. Ever thought about the possibility that his dad is teaching him a valuable lesson of earning your own way in this world and nothing is given to you . This young man earned it and should keep it. Would it be nice of his dad to make a donation to the scholarship fund.....yes. Should he be obligated to.....no. Far be it for anyone at UCLA to think to give this young man a free pass in hopes of continuous donations. Let this young man be something I'm sure it is hard to be with your father being that famous......A Normal College Student.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:08 am |
  21. mr

    The reality is that you have to pay kids now to get them to play football. Who would do something so dangerous and detrimental to the brain without some compensation. It is becoming a dumb man's sport. I am surprised a kid with a 3.7 average would even consider it after all that has been discovered in the medical community regarding the impact of football on the brain.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:06 am |
  22. Dazza

    Scholarships are basically a form of financial aid that were created to ensure that that those who could not afford, but were worthy of, an advanced education were able to receive one. This young man, while he may be an attentive student and good football player does not need financial aid to afford a higher education. When there is such a need for financial aid for so that people can pursue a higher education, should society finance the education of the son of a person worth half a billion dollars. Especially when the merit of his scholarship is based primarily on his ability to play football.
    To do so is to let the 1% (and Sean Combs is part of the 1%) continue to take needed money away from the rest of us, and to let our idolization of both football players and public figures blind us to reality.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:06 am |
  23. Walt A

    If he applied for the scholarship than it should be returned. If it was given to him by the school (they recruited him to go there) than he should keep and use it.
    Besides, I could see P-Diddy gibing the school a big donation in the future. OR P-Diddy could plop down a dollar amount for future scholarships.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:05 am |
  24. Monica

    Maybe it's because he's wealthy that he has decided to make a name for himself by showing the world that he is smart and a talented athlete and that he is making his OWN way. Why the need to give back with an additional scholarship? That just cancels out the one that he's earned. I'm sure there are many children of the wealthy that have also earned scholarships based on their own merit, no one is asking them to give back? We put too much focus on 'famous' people and their wealth. We can't fault them for making a name for themselves. I say live and let live and pull the racial out of
    this issue.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:04 am |
  25. DumbitdownAmerica

    First of all, in the world of academics, a 3.75 is not worthy of a scholarship. There are students with much higher grade point averages, that come from actual economically disadvantaged backgrounds that are more worthy of the money. Granted, kudos to him for a 3.75, but it doesn't merit a scholarship of that amount!!!!!!!!!!!

    May 29, 2012 at 10:02 am |
    • mary robinson

      3.75 is very high, depending on what school district we're talking about, 4.0 is often the highest you can earn.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:10 am |
  26. felix el gato

    I guess daddy spent his tuition fund on blow.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:01 am |
  27. IMO Only

    He worked for it, he earned it, he should keep it. Albeit, the right thing to do would be to say "no thanks". That's a 54k scholarship that could be given to someone in more need.

    May 29, 2012 at 10:00 am |
  28. Joe

    I believe it is honor enough that the kid recieved the scholarship and now they should show the CHARACTER of turning it down. I guess we will see the real WORTH of Diddy and his family.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:53 am |
  29. Bob

    The kid apparently earned it. If they take it away, the lesson is "you are different because your family has money" – is that what we want to teach him?? And, no, Diddy should not make an equal donation.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:53 am |
    • Tony

      They are not taking it away. It is a matter of the money going to someone who needs it. I am curious about this being published becaused he is Sean Combs' son; are there other children of wealthy families that earn scholarships? What do they do when thier child earns a scholarship?

      May 29, 2012 at 10:01 am |
  30. Gary

    3.75 in nice, but in this world, it isn't rare. My son in a tough, private middle school is pulling all A's. Bigger point, is that the kid did earn it, but this is an opportunity for his dad to teach the son a lesson. As they have enough money to pay for his tuition, they should celebrate that the young Combs was good enough to get the scholarship, but then return it to help a really needy kid. In this economy, think how happy and grateful it would be to give it to a deserving kid.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:52 am |
  31. brian

    The school is using this young man. They get to put a tick mark in the 'scholarship assigned to a deserving black student/athlete column' and at the same time they have their fingers crossed for a huge donation to their music department AND...if the kid really is good and starts the buzz from the name alone will help fill the stands

    May 29, 2012 at 9:52 am |
  32. mklsgl

    Absurd. If Diddy Jr. is that good on the football field and that good in the classroom, good for him–give him an award. Let the scholarships be earned by those who need it.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:51 am |
  33. Thomas

    I think Diddy and his son need to ask themselves the question – is this the best thing they can do for the world in their heart or are there others out there that need a scholarship more?

    May 29, 2012 at 9:51 am |
  34. Richard

    He should keep the scholarship and Diddy should make a comparable contriution to the school.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:50 am |
    • Thomas M

      Awesome Idea. I agree.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:56 am |
  35. shanessa1

    This is easy. He keeps the scholarship.

    Later, Diddy donates $54,000 (or more) to UCLA.

    Problem Solved.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:48 am |
  36. Was a merit based society...

    If he earned it based on merit, then of course he should keep it. Our country needs to get away from the idea of playing favorites.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:48 am |
  37. Davis

    3.75 out of 4? He most definitely did NOT score high enough to earn an academic scholarship. He may be a gifted athlete, which is not exlpained here. Nor are his ACT/SAT scores listed. This young man is quite literally taking needed scholarship money out of some truly deserving hands. In our country, money begets money. Forget about it and move on. No comment here will make a bit of difference.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:45 am |
    • Johnny Appleseed

      Absolutely true. While a 3.7+ GPA is impressive, anyone is familliar with admission rates to UCLA knows that a good proportion of admitted students score above a 4.0 GPA due to AP classes. How about "black, football player with a 3.74 GPA?" Now we are talking scholarship material. I used the "B" word, I guess that makes me a racist.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:56 am |
  38. Sloth

    What does it mean that he "earned" it? You think his family name had absolutely NOTHING to do with it? Please!!! Like others have said here, if this was a rich white kid everyone would be up in arms and appalled that he recieved this kind of "scholarship." They should do the right thing and give back the scholarship so that a student who is actually IN NEED can actually use it and not be in debt for the next 30 years for their education. I'm sure this kids father drops $54k in a day on Cristal and clubs. If you're parents make that kind of money then they should pay for their kids schooling, plain and simple.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:44 am |
    • Willow

      Sloth, clearly someone needs to pay for your schooling, since you can't follow simple, 5th grade rules of the english language. Maybe you're (you're = you are) just jealous that your (denotes ownership) education was sorely lacking.

      May 29, 2012 at 10:12 am |
  39. Oh please

    3.7 in HS is piddle. Anyone who goes to class and does his homework, which is exactly what you are supposed to do, should be getting straight As in HS. Funny how they don't mention what he took for classes, or class ranking, or SAT/ACT scores. The only ones that get a free ride for academics are typically the 1st or 2nd in their classes. Especially at a high demand school such as UCLA.

    Now if this were purely an athletic scholarship then keep it at that and don't bring his GPA into it. Whoever wrote this needs another Jeffrey.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:43 am |
  40. E J

    I think he should keep it because he earned it. BUT! His father should make an equal contribution to the school for a scholarship to another deserving student. I don't know Sean Combs politics but if he cares about "giving back to the community" he should put up a scholarship to honor the qualities that helped his son win his.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:43 am |
  41. YRUnotMadAtThis?

    I worked hard in high school for a better GPA than that, was very talented in Fine Art, won several art fairs before entering college, and had gained a reputation in my community for my talent.

    My parents didn’t help me one bit with my college tuition nor did they have anything saved for me. When I applied for grants and financial assistance I was rejected for a lot of it on the grounds that my parents “made too much money” (A stereotypically middle class family? Really?) and that they had both been to college.

    Now you have the son of a pompous jackwad who is showered with gifts costing more than what I would make in 20 years, getting the kind of scholarship I would have done horrible things for in my day, who doesn’t need it and probably whizzes through that much money on a monthly basis, unconscionably spending it on junk so stupid that it would render the average person catatonic.
    Clearly, this kid “deserves” his *chuckles* ‘Football Scholarship.’

    Screw you, Education System.
    Screw you, America, for your insipid celebrity worship and over-prioritization of football.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:41 am |
  42. Ryan

    He earned the scholarship, he should keep it. Just because his dad is rich doesn't take away from his personal accomplishment. However, the right thing to do would be for P Diddy to also give a donation to the school for at least as much as the scholarship.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:39 am |
    • AndriconBoy

      You're right. Except that if some people are refused loans, grants, and scholarships based on their parents income, then this money should go to someone who is truly in need of it.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:50 am |
  43. Greenstar

    As a former student-athlete....the hard work one puts in on the field and in the class room to attempt to recevie a scholarship from any school is a lifetime achievement, regardless of their finacnial situtation. He should keep it. It represents to him that he was the one who achieved it. It also teaches that if you work hard and is persistent, good things will come. Why have someone give thier scholarship back just becuase they can afford to go to college? That would not be right.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:38 am |
  44. Millertime

    If he earned it, he should keep it! What does that say about our society- that if you are rich, you shouldn't try hard to earn anything? And someone that did not earn the high grades should get 'free' money they didn't earn.
    If he is feeling guilty, they could donate money to create a new scholarship.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:35 am |
  45. Bear Workman

    If he earned it fair and square then he should keep it. Plain and simple, anything else would be socialism. Giving back because the family is wealthy is another matter

    May 29, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  46. Kathy

    Diddy, don't take the money, too greedy. He will still get the scholarship on his own merit. Diddy knows first hand about poor kids needing money for college. Do the right thing Sean

    May 29, 2012 at 9:33 am |
  47. TeaParty

    Would you all be saying the same thing – "Oh, it's his. He EARNED it" – if it was Mitt Romney's kid? Think about it.

    BTW – these big "merit based" scholarships seem to never be available to Caucasian kids. They always go to minorities these days.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:32 am |
    • duh

      thumbs up, well said.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:41 am |
    • Shan

      I guess you never heard of the Natoinal MERIT SCHOLARSHIP program have you. LOLOLOLOLOL.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:53 am |
      • Minority, but not

        National merit scholarship is $2500, not $50000. The money is not granted by school.

        May 29, 2012 at 9:59 am |
    • Minority, but not

      Hey! Not all minority students with similar or higher achievement will get this kind of scholarship. Look at Jeremy Lin. He led his high school team to gain the state championship, UCLA turned him down for admission even; let alone scholarship. Some minority students are not included in the minority status.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:56 am |
  48. Donna

    I like the idea of Justin keeping the scholarship. He earned it through his own hard work and its HIS, despite whatever success his father has accomplished. Justin did this entirely on his own. Let the young man keep it and enjoy the fruits of his labor.

    That said, it would be really nice if Diddy Daddy created a scholarship fund in the same amount to benefit another child that is deserving and whose parents may not be quite so financially successful. That would do more for his profile than any White Party he throws. And it would be paying it forward....the right thing to do.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:30 am |
    • Diane

      Donna – agreed....seems like an easy thing to do that would create not only an opportunity, but a lot of goodwill. I'm sure they can afford it and give another young person a chance. Why not?!

      May 29, 2012 at 9:46 am |
  49. Vince

    Keep the scholarship...he earned it and it's not likely that even if he didn't take it, that they'd just automatically give it to someone else. I'm just glad he's going to college. That's commendable in itself considering that he could easily bypass college and work some high paying made up job for his dad.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:28 am |
  50. stateschool

    There is a deep and fundamental wrongness to rich kids receiving scholarships.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:28 am |
  51. marineace

    What a great young man! He earned it but should pass along the scholarship $ to a student who would not otherwise be able to attend college. It would be the upstanding and correct thing to do.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:27 am |
  52. matt

    The real achievement is that he got a 3.75 and he made the team, not that he got a scholarship. Personally, I would be ashamed to take the money knowing I don't need it and that millions of others do. Plus, it shows that he wouldn't be just like his dad who has no talent other than leeching off of others with talent.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:26 am |
    • Vince

      Millionaires take stuff all the time that they don't need...tax breaks for example...nothing new...they all do it. I just don't see this as a problem since the boy earned it himself.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:34 am |
  53. Artistic&Blessed

    The caption under the photo states that it is an athletic scholarship. He has the GPA and excelleld in sports, he earned it. There are students going to college on athletic scholarships, from all walks of life. His father made a name for himself as a Performer and Music Mogul, Fashion Designer, Restaurant Owner, who has his own colognes and perfumes. His Son is making a name for himself, by making a new path of his own.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:26 am |
  54. chris marlowe

    He may have earned it but he is in an economic position to help another deserving young man by declining the scholarship. Instead he could be given some other kind of award of merit and recognition for doing so. To me that is the very essence of being a true team player!

    May 29, 2012 at 9:17 am |
  55. Sngs

    I think he should keep it – he worked hard to earn it. But at the same time, it might be nice if the Combs family created a scholarship in the same amount to be given to a deserving student.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:16 am |
    • EarnedIT?

      He had a 3.4GPA. He didn't earn it, it was given to him by a board that wants his dad in the stands. 3.4GPA does not get you 54k in scholarships, not today, not with so many 4.0GPA's out there.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:33 am |
      • David

        It was a 3.75 GPA. Can't you read?

        May 29, 2012 at 9:56 am |
  56. Johnson

    Did he apply for the money? That's the odd part. No way he should keep the funds.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:16 am |
  57. Ms. Opinionated

    First, a congratulations to him for maintaining such a high personal standard. However, his father clearly has not the same standard and as such I think that young Mr. Combs should not keep it simply because his father should be obligated to provide for his son's education. Scholarships should go to those who actually have a need for them.

    Just saying.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:13 am |
  58. SMHFarrar

    Ahh, also need to know that he gifted this son with a $344,000 Mercedes Maybach at 16 years old. He can clearly afford to pay for this child's education. He's a college graduate from Howard University so he knows what to do. lol My kids worked hard too to get their scholarships but they needed the money. (o:

    May 29, 2012 at 9:10 am |
  59. realitycheck

    Earned it? No. He was given it, based on a set of decisions made by a group of people responsible for assigning moneys from a fund.

    Need it? No.

    The right thing? He should just politely decline it, allowing those funds to be used by someone else.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:08 am |
  60. JustAnOpinion

    Ok, he earned it. My child who is not an athlete had a 4.0 GPA and didn't get a free education. My wife & I paid and my child worked two jobs to get money. How is that fair?

    May 29, 2012 at 9:08 am |
  61. Basil

    So you shouldn't be given a scholarship, despite the fact that you worked really hard to excel, just because daddy can pay for you to go to college? That's just sour grapes. We should applaud him for forging a life of his own and not being another spoiled brat who mooches off society.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:07 am |
    • realist

      Clearly affirmative action had something to do with the scholarship being granted. Giving scholarships to rich kids is not the purpose of affirmative action.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:17 am |
      • brian

        Exactly!

        May 29, 2012 at 9:51 am |
      • Steve

        Actually, no. Affirmative action was specifically not an issue here which, interestingly enough, is why this is "news."

        In this day and age, it is ok to give someone money because of the color of their skin, but not because of hard work and results.

        Diddy should be proud of his son, who earned hi way in. He should not be penalized because his father found success in business. What lesson would it be if a "merit" scholarship were denied because of anything other than merit? Why is "need" more important tan "merit?"

        Answer those questions, and you have a sense of the terrible, long lasting damage that affirmative action has done to black America. Here you have a black kid who worked hard and achieved, and people are trying to take it away because it is presumably more honorable to get a handout tied to "need" instead of "merit."

        Dddy should give hs kd te 54 grand he woud ave paid to invest – give him a leg up. Tat would anchor the point.

        May 29, 2012 at 10:04 am |
    • Phil

      Means test would be appropriate here.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:21 am |
  62. Vicki

    He should keep it. He earned it with his hard work.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:06 am |
  63. Gregg

    I don't like his Dad much but he obviously did good. The kid is a hard worker and deserves merit where it is due.

    May 29, 2012 at 9:06 am |
  64. mom

    What a joke, my daughter has a gpa of almost 4.3 she should get a scholarship, not someone who can clearly pay for any damn thing he wants

    May 29, 2012 at 9:03 am |
    • Ex-TeaPartyr

      It's not Sean Coombs fault that you are broke! If your daughter was "all that", she would have an academic ride through college.

      Your daughter is a failure!!!

      May 29, 2012 at 9:08 am |
      • SMHFarrar

        lol!!

        May 29, 2012 at 9:12 am |
      • Jan Grama

        Your comment regarding the girl with the 4.3 GPA was grossly uncalled for and mean spirited. just because she doesn't play football thus shouldn't get a scholarship? This country needs highly intelligent science and math majors in higher education. I really hope the girl excels in one of these areas and greatly contributes to society. She deserves our support.

        May 29, 2012 at 9:39 am |
    • Donald

      That's a 3.75 of a 4, not 4.3 out of 5 like your daughter.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:12 am |
  65. RMiller

    I say he should keep the scholarship. Unless we want to investigate all wealthy people, White/Black/Other we should not pick on him. Who is to say how many kids he paid for to go to school? We dont know the whole story. I say, Kudos to this kid who is smart, talented and deserves it, no matter who his father is.....

    May 29, 2012 at 8:59 am |
  66. dan77

    I agree that he earned it, but his dad should show him how to help those who are struggling and give back the scholarship so that it can help those who can't just write a check to pay for school.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:57 am |
    • Marti

      I agree. Congratulations are definitely in order for this young man, he has been recognized for his hard work by this scholarship. Let him keep it but it would be nice if Dad can make a matching donation so another kid not as fortunate gets a chance as well.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:22 am |
      • Marti

        But now I'm thinking that Diddy has a lot of kids to get through college, must be great for this kid to be able to say thanks but no thanks, Pop! Hope he puts it to good use.

        May 29, 2012 at 9:27 am |
  67. Anne

    How many celebrities' kids do we see living on their parents' reputation and bank account well into adulthood? Here is a kid who is earning his way in life. I applaud his work effort and appreciate his natural abilities. Let him keep his scholarship and go to school as Justin Combs, and not the son of P. Diddy.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:55 am |
    • CJ

      It is up to Justin and his father as to what they decide to do. I do not expect them to do what I would do, but kind of hope they would do something positive with the $54,000 scholarship.

      If it was me, I would accept the scholarship and make a donatation to a charity that helps students who want to go to College but do not have the money.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:07 am |
  68. Jenoside

    He deserves it as he earned it, but it would be incredibly charitable of the Combs family to return it so that another kid whose parents can't afford to pay for college could have the opportunity.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:54 am |
    • Alicia

      Hard work pays off and this young man proved that. So he should keep the schoalrship. Why don't his dad donate the $54,000 to a scholarship fund and let his child keep what he earned. The are other children who receive scholarships who's parent are rich but not famous like P Diddy. This isn't any different.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:05 am |
  69. Chad

    This is a no brainer...he should decline and let P Diddy pay for the education. People are overthinking this way too much. Let someone who is less fortunate receive the honor instead. His son should still be proud that he received the scholarship but kindly decline.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:54 am |
    • Steve

      He should keep it because he earned it. This was a merit based scholarship, and so had nothing to do with need, race, or anything else. It would be an insult against his achievement if Diddy were to return it and rob his son of the opportunity to pay his own way.

      I do not believe there is any honor in not taking what is earned. It is that mentality that has led us to a moment in American history when great minds and achievements are attacked, and assets seized through punative taxation..

      It's his. He earned it. He gets to keep it. Shame on anyone who tries to take this success away from him.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:05 am |
  70. rudde

    This is simply a young man finding his way in life. He knew his Father can pay for him but still worked hard to earn it. Self made!!! don't kill the young man's spirit...... definitely another millionaire in the making

    May 29, 2012 at 8:53 am |
    • mshawaii808

      Great comment! This boy worked hard for this scholarship, he deserved to get it. Unlike other children of the Rich & Famous, whose parents just GIVE them whatever they want, not teaching them how to get off their lazy butts and "actually"work for what they want. Good job P. Diddy!

      May 29, 2012 at 9:04 am |
  71. Slackjawed

    He should keep the money. P.Diddy's already probably spent millions and millions in taxes to the IRS, more than thousands of Joe Blows will over the course of a lifetime...combined. He's done his financial duty.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:51 am |
  72. Steve

    Why was this issue ignored when the children of John Elway, Joe Montana, Barry Sanders, David Robinson, Archie Manning or Ralph Sampson were offered and accepted scholarships to colleges? Based upon some of the comments above, no child with a wealthy parent should accept a scholarship. I don't think that is what our country is about. If one works hard, you should be able to reap the rewards of your work. I worked hard, went to school on a football scholarship and am now an attorney. Should I have been penalized because my parents could afford to pay my tuition? I don't recall my parents scoring touchdowns or making tackles when I was in high school.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:50 am |
  73. jim

    I wish people would stop referring to these monotonic clowns as "artists". When I sit on a toilet my output is more artistic than theirs onstage.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:49 am |
    • michaelh

      I am not a diddy fan, but I prefer his output, to yours.

      thank you very much.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:04 am |
    • Jan Grama

      Hilarious comment! Having studied music and perfumed classical music, I love music. Hate rap for it's lack of musicality.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:42 am |
  74. SilverSweet

    It was clearly earned on merit. I think he deserves to keep the scholarship.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:48 am |
    • Alesha

      I agree that the student should keep it. He earned it. He APPLIED for it. He deserves it. Side Note: His father's money is not his money.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:53 am |
  75. Juju

    Is it possible that ucla awarded the scholarship because they want p diddy in the crowd? Hate to be so cynical but colleges are businesses too. On a positive note, I hope the kid can really play! If so, good for him.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:44 am |
    • jmclaughlin

      no wonder california is broke when they give scholarships to millionaires

      May 29, 2012 at 8:52 am |
    • Christopher

      Most colleges and universities are, by definition, not businesses. Businesses operate to make a profit. Colleges/Universities don't. There are some for-profit schools, such as many of the online schools you see on TV, but major universities like UCLA are specifically nonprofit. They do have to cover expenses and rely on tuition payments to do such, but your comment is one of many misconceptions about the university system.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:07 am |
  76. LongIslandNY

    I think from the standpoint of having personal values it is right that this scholarship was earned through hard work and perseverance. It should not be given back, at least directly.

    Diddy and Justin should be proud of this accomplishment. Getting awarded a scholarship, and using it, permits this to be part of a college transcript. There is value for Justin here.

    That being said, I also agree that since this is a paltry amount that Diddy can easily afford, something should be done to put that money to better use. Maybe Diddy can donate a like amount to charity or a scholarship fund that exists at the same university? He may have already done this and simply will not disclose it for the time being. This would be a win-win scenario for all.

    Be that as it may, this was well thought out since applications must be submitted by Diddy and Justin, and then reviewed by the appropriate boards. I don't believe there was any wrongdoing here, but if values were a part of this, then how about complementary societal values?

    May 29, 2012 at 8:42 am |
  77. MauiBear

    He DID earn it. True enough. But it would be a GRAND gesture if he were to return it. My daughter could have gotten a merit scholarship but we decided, since I am lucky enough to be able to fund her college education ALONE, she would forgo the scholarship in favor of someone who's entire college opportunity depends on scholarship money. And believe me, I am no P Diddy when it comes to money. It's a great testament to this kid's hard work but it would be even GREATER if he "donated" the scholarship back

    May 29, 2012 at 8:39 am |
    • Jan Grama

      What a high level of integrity you used in deciding to turn down the scholarship. This is an amazing lesson for you child.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:45 am |
  78. HeEarnedIt!

    His son EARNED the scholarship. Just because his father happens to be wealthy, doesn't mean anything as his father is under NO OBLIGATION to pay for his son's tuition.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:37 am |
    • chris

      you sir, are an idiot. there are literally millions of people out there who cannot afford college, this money could be of use to them.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:50 am |
  79. bhedrick69

    I think he should keep it, he earned it. I like the comments that P.D should donate back to the UCLA scholarship fund, but I am guessing he probably already did.

    My question is why did he apply for a scholarship?

    May 29, 2012 at 8:37 am |
    • Alesha

      His son earned his scholarship and he should keep it. He deserved it. He applied for it. P. Diddy's money is not Justin's money. P. Diddy has given lots of money to colleges including his own alma mater, Howard University which is a HBCU. He also generously supports his friends charities that support college education and scholarships. P. Diddy doesn't have to do anything to appease opinionated people. His life and efforts speak volumes. Whether you appreciate his music or not you must respect his walk...#thatisall

      May 29, 2012 at 9:05 am |
  80. JSoto

    "Merit based" means he earned it through hard work, perseverance, and dedication. Congratulations and good for him. He should keep it, and other kids should learn through his example.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:33 am |
  81. John Towler

    The kid earned it. not his dad.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:32 am |
  82. Des Moiner

    No athletic scholarship is earned; it's a gift to continue successful universtiy marketing campaigns given to people genetically predisposed to superior athletic ability. If athletics were done away with completely in college, it would be cheaper for everyone. Gawd forbid the tragedy of the lose of a thousand college football games on Saturdays.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:30 am |
  83. Marvin R

    I think Diddy can afford Justin's education. They could name a scholarship after him to recognize his effort ( The Justin Combs Scholarship) & award it someone else who shows the same effort & needs the assistance.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:28 am |
  84. mikimazzi

    I think he should keep the scholarship he did earn it. That being said his father could/should make a donation to the schools scholarship fund in his sons name that donates based on financial need.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:26 am |
  85. Felix

    I like the fact that he earned it. If people want to complain maybe his dad will pay for a kid's college. Here's my take they call P. Diddy the richest man in hip hop, but 20 years ago he was riding a bus with the spare change in his pocket trying to make a dream a come true. Risk is Risk and he won. not his son. And Diddy does alot of good with his money. facts are facts. I respect the kid for working his ass off and not hiding under his Dad's empire

    May 29, 2012 at 8:25 am |
    • mike

      Riak? What risk? He had nothing to begin with. He just got extremely lucky. Pay for your own schooling. Thanks.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:34 am |
  86. ER

    Justin should keep the scholarship because he earned it but his father should donate double that amount (or more) to the UCLA scholarship fund so more disadvantaged students can afford to attend and earn their college degree.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:25 am |
  87. juanita

    He earned the grades and the $$$ not his father! leave the kid alone!!

    May 29, 2012 at 8:23 am |
  88. lilylou

    It was a merit-based scholarship, not needs-based. He earned it and it has nothing to do with his daddy's money. His daddy may already be quite active with donating his money to worthy causes. Don't judge if you don't have the facts.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:21 am |
    • Mangwi

      Totally agree, couldn't have been said better. Him and his achievements are independent of that of his father's. Besides,it is not everyone's father who has money that will be willing to help out their child. That position assumes a lot for many families that may not operate that way. If we start limiting students who get scholarships because of their 'wealthy' parents it will be difficult to finally draw the line and we ultimately run the harsh risks of not helping people as the merit based scholarship sets out to do.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:33 am |
  89. Jomm

    I do not think no one will a GOOD BRAIN and COMMEN SENSE would think this kid should give it back. ONLY haters and JEALOUS FOLKS would think this kid should give it back.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:21 am |
  90. Jomm

    What! Give it back? NO. This is this kid's acheivement. If he was a kid who gets his daddy money and wait on his father's weath, the same people would be calling this kid a spoil brat. HE EARNED IT. As I use to hear on the Cosby show to Vanessa when her friends pick on her because they thought she was rich, Bill told Vanessa, "THIS IS MY MONEY, NOT YOURS". Parents help us because we are thieri children; however, it is THEIR money in the end. This is why they can put you out of their house at 18 with NOTHING, give you away and your are poor and trying to make it.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:19 am |
    • andilayne

      A writing course would benefit you immensely.

      May 29, 2012 at 9:32 am |
  91. Alicia

    I don't see any reason for him to return it. He is not the wealthiest artist in hip hop; his father is. Aren't we always complaining about stars and their children getting preferential treatment and getting everywhere in life because of their famous/wealthy parents?? This kid has both the grades AND the athletic ability to earn himself this scholarship, and we're STILL complaining. I'm glad he was awarded this scholarship. It will teach him that if you work hard, you will succeed.....and not because your father is a millionaire.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:18 am |
    • GreedKnight

      I agree with your thought Alicia. But in receiving the scholarship he has the proof of his own ability and proof to any eyes on him that he can succeed on his own merit. With that in mind he and his family should now decide even though he can take this money and go to college should he; knowing the fact that his family could easily pay for his school if they desired to do so.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:29 am |
    • assumptac

      I agree that this young man should keep the money that he obviously earned. His dad didn't buy it, this came about through his own merit. I am sure that somewhere down the road that diddy or whatever he wants to called will give it back in other ways. will people complain about that....

      May 29, 2012 at 8:35 am |
  92. GreedKnight

    The younger Diddy earned his scholarship and has every right to keep it should he decide to. That said he and his family should really consider should he keep it. It is his award and again he earned it but what is the point of a scholarship or grant but to help someone afford the costs of higher education. Is the younger Diddy in a position that he would not be able to attend or afford school. Does he not have the means or the opportunity to attend college without the scholarship. My concern is more with the person who had the need opposed to the want as Justin did. But what about the other candidates with 3.75 gpa's who were on the fringe of getting this award. What about the person whos life could hinge on this and could come out of it with a degree or end up flipping burgers later in life because he/she did not recieve what the wanted and needed.
    Justin comb's has already proved to himself and the eyes that are on him that he had the ability and determination to earn the scholarship. The question he and his family should be asking now is now that he could and did, should he accept or return the award in favor of helping someone else make it.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:17 am |
  93. jim

    I have known several very wealthy friends whose rich parents refused to pay for any of their children's college.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:12 am |
  94. Jean

    He should definitely return the scholarship and never should have been awarded it in the first place. The blame should be on the people who awarded it to them. It's disgraceful when the richest people take advantage of these programs when there are people who truly need the money.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:10 am |
    • Will

      Jean said "It's disgraceful when the richest people take advantage of these programs when there are people who truly need the money." In reality Jean, its disgraceful that you would say this young man didn't earn it. Also, if you went to college you may know the difference between merit based and need based. Poor kids could have gotten this too but it went to the most qualified person. Those with less money take advantage of need based scholarships.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:31 am |
    • JSoto

      It's a merit based scholarship, not one based on financial need. Learn the difference.
      He's not rich. His dad is.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:38 am |
  95. John

    Give it back he can afford to pay for his son's college education.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:10 am |
  96. Sunset Sil

    I am not a rich guy and could certainly use the scholarship. But for me to say or even imply that this kid should give back his scholarship because his daddy is rich would make me feel like such a loser. Is he going to be Justin Combs? or P. Diddy's son? Oh and BTW just because you have money to spend doesn't mean you SHOULD. That's the quickest way to becoming poor. Smarten up, "MIKE".

    May 29, 2012 at 8:08 am |
  97. Kathy

    Not all scholarships are "applied for". If fact my son received a scholarship out of the blue based on merit. My daughter received a full tuition scholarship without applying for it because of her classroom performance – i t was awarded as a part of her acceptance.
    For the most part the criteria for scholarships like this are cut and dried – if th student meets certain criteria they receive the schoalrship. if this is the case here this young man deserves the scholarship and should enjoy it. How do you propose we develop the next generation of adutls if we don't let them be rewarded on their own merit? Would this dicusssion even be going on if this young man had a name different from his fathers?

    May 29, 2012 at 8:08 am |
  98. Toad

    I think he should keep the scholarship he earned. It wasn't a need-based scholarship, this is a scholarship in recognition of hard work, something the kid can be proud of all of his life. His family's wealth shouldn't be an issue in being offered nor accepting a merit scholarship. Now, after the scholarship is accepted, it would be good for the family to offer the college fund that is not being used to a need-based scholarship fund. Optional, but this would be a very good thing.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:06 am |
    • GreedKnight

      Toad it was not a need based scholarship but does that mean that no one out there Needs it. Justin has the satisfaction of knowing he earned this but i think he and his family need to decide if the achievement is is enough when they can afford schooling without it and in an ideal world pass on the award to someone who needs it.

      May 29, 2012 at 8:39 am |
  99. Models74

    He earned it. If he returns the money we encourage him to fall under his father's shade. That scholarship is his pride of achieving something that he deserves without his father being his umbrella.

    May 29, 2012 at 8:05 am |
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