The Reading / Listening - Philanthropy - Level 5

Students at a college in the USA got a huge surprise during their commencement ceremony. The students were listening to a speech at Morehouse College from the philanthropist Robert F. Smith. He was a recipient of an honorary degree. He ended his speech by informing 400 students that he would pay their student loans, worth about $40 million. He said: "This is my class, 2019, and my family is making a grant to eliminate their student loans." He added: "On behalf of the eight generations of my family who have been in this country, we're going to put a little fuel in your bus."



Robert F. Smith, 56, earned an MBA with honors from Columbia Business School. In 2000, he founded the investment company Vista Equity Partners, which manages over $46 billion in assets. Vista made him a multi-billionaire. Mr Smith was the first African-American to sign the Giving Pledge. People who sign this promise to give at least half of their wealth to different causes. A graduate who had his $150,000 loan paid off said it would have an "immeasurable impact" on his life. He said: "Just imagine the weight lifted off your shoulders when you have a clean slate coming out of college."

Try the same news story at these levels:

    Philanthropy - Level 4 or  Philanthropy - Level 6

Sources
  • https://abcnews.go.com/US/billionaire-philanthropist-shocks-morehouse-grads-promising-pay-off/story?id=63137376
  • https://www.cbsnews.com/news/who-is-morehouse-billionaire-robert-f-smith/
  • https://atlantablackstar.com/2019/05/20/billionaire-investor-ceo-robert-smith-shocks-morehouse-graduates-with-promise-to-eliminate-their-student-loan-debt/


Make sure you try all of the online activities for this reading and listening - There are dictations, multiple choice, drag and drop activities, crosswords, hangman, flash cards, matching activities and a whole lot more. Please enjoy :-)



Phrase Matching

Paragraph 1

  1. a huge
  2. commencement
  3. He was a recipient of an
  4. student loans, worth
  5. my family is making a
  6. eliminate their
  7. the eight generations
  8. we're going to put a little
  1. student loans
  2. about $40 million
  3. fuel in your bus
  4. surprise
  5. honorary degree
  6. of my family
  7. ceremony
  8. grant

Paragraph 2

  1. earned an MBA
  2. he founded the investment
  3. Vista made him a multi-
  4. give at least half of their wealth
  5. had his $150,000 loan
  6. have an immeasurable
  7. imagine the weight lifted
  8. have a clean
  1. off your shoulders
  2. billionaire
  3. paid off
  4. slate
  5. impact on his life
  6. to different causes
  7. with honors
  8. company

Listening — Listen and fill in the gaps

Students at a college in the USA got (1) ___________________ during their commencement ceremony. The students were listening (2) ___________________ at Morehouse College from the philanthropist Robert F. Smith. He was a recipient of an honorary degree. He (3) ___________________ by informing 400 students that he would pay their student (4) ___________________ $40 million. He said: "This is my class, 2019, and my family is making a (5) ___________________ their student loans." He added: "On behalf of the eight generations of my family who have been in this country, we're going to put (6) ___________________ in your bus."

Robert F. Smith, 56, (7) ___________________ with honors from Columbia Business School. In 2000, (8) ___________________ investment company Vista Equity Partners, which manages over $46 (9) ___________________. Vista made him a multi-billionaire. Mr Smith was the first African-American to sign the Giving Pledge. People who (10) ___________________ to give at least half of their wealth to different causes. A graduate who had his $150,000 loan (11) ___________________ it would have an "immeasurable impact" on his life. He said: "Just (12) ___________________ lifted off your shoulders when you have a clean slate coming out of college."

Put a slash (/) where the spaces are

StudentsatacollegeintheUSAgotahugesurpriseduringtheircommenc
ementceremony.ThestudentswerelisteningtoaspeechatMorehouse
CollegefromthephilanthropistRobertF.Smith.Hewasarecipientofanh
onorarydegree.Heendedhisspeechbyinforming400studentsthathew
ouldpaytheirstudentloans,worthabout$40million.Hesaid:"Thisismy
class,2019,andmyfamilyismakingagranttoeliminatetheirstudentloa
ns."Headded:"Onbehalfoftheeightgenerationsofmyfamilywhohave
beeninthiscountry,we'regoingtoputalittlefuelinyourbus."RobertF.S
mith,56,earnedanMBAwithhonorsfromColumbiaBusinessSchool.In
2000,hefoundedtheinvestmentcompanyVistaEquityPartners,which
managesover$46billioninassets.Vistamadehimamulti-billionaire.Mr
SmithwasthefirstAfrican-AmericantosigntheGivingPledge.Peoplewh
osignthispromisetogiveatleasthalfoftheirwealthtodifferentcauses.A
graduatewhohadhis$150,000loanpaidoffsaiditwouldhavean"immea
surableimpact"onhislife.Hesaid:"Justimaginetheweightliftedoffyour
shoulderswhenyouhaveacleanslatecomingoutofcollege."

Student survey

Write five GOOD questions about this topic in the table. Do this in pairs. Each student must write the questions on his / her own paper. When you have finished, interview other students. Write down their answers.

(Please look at page 12 of the PDF to see a photocopiable example of this activity.)

Discussion — Write your own questions

STUDENT A’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student B)

(a) ________________

(b) ________________

(c) ________________

(d) ________________

(e) ________________

(f) ________________

(g) ________________

(h) ________________

STUDENT B’s QUESTIONS (Do not show these to student A)

(i) ________________

(j) ________________

(k) ________________

(l) ________________

(m) ________________

(n) ________________

(o) ________________

(p) ________________





Free writing

Write about this topic for 10 minutes. Comment on your partner’s paper.

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Answers

(Please check your answers against the article above.

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