Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty
Photo by Paul Marotta/Getty

From her hometown of Newark, New Jersey to Harvard University, Queen Latifah says she’ll never forget where she came from.

The Girls Trip star and hip hop pioneer headed to Sanders Theatre at Harvard on Tuesday afternoon to receive the W.E.B. Du Bois Medal from the Hutchins Center for African & African American Research, which presents the honor to those who have made contributions to black history and black culture.

“New Jersey in the building!” Latifah said as she took the stage, looking stylish in a blue suit and black blouse. “I feel so honored to be up here and among such great people who’ve done such accomplished things.”

Though she moves between entertainment, philanthropy, and several other industries these days, Latifah shared that it wasn’t always a seamless transition. In her early days of pushing her way into the industry, she was told she would never make it.

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