Melania's donation to a computer science school was rejected, so now she feels cancelled

In a statement made by the former first lady she says she was "disappointed but not surprised"

By Kelly McClure

Nights & Weekends Editor

Published February 18, 2022 4:33PM (EST)

Melania Trump   (Getty/Win McNamee)
Melania Trump (Getty/Win McNamee)

Melania Trump posted a statement to her website on Friday expressing that she was "disappointed but not surprised" when an Oklahoma school specializing in advanced computer science skills rejected her donation. The donation was made on behalf of the former first lady's foundation, Fostering the Future, a Be Best Initiative, which she started shortly after her time in the White House.

Melania gives background on the donation attempt in the intro to her statement:

Recently, a computer science school founded in Silicon Valley with a campus in Oklahoma agreed to work with Fostering the Future. Multiple scholarships were going to be granted through the school's preferred designated fund, based in Tulsa, with the first class of students enrolling in Fall 2022. I had signed the Designated Fund Agreement and was waiting for the countersignature when the school informed me it would no longer participate. They would not accept scholarship dollars for deserving students—even as an anonymous gift. It was made clear to me that the school's Board of Directors organized a politically-motivated decision.

Mrs. Trump goes on to say that this is not the first time her charitable donations have been rejected, and that's a fact. In 2017 Melania tried to donate a selection of Dr Seuss books to the Cambridgeport elementary school library in Massachusetts and the school's librarian, Liz Phipps Soeiro, turned them away. Soeiro doubled-down on her rejection of the books saying "you may not be aware of this, but Dr Seuss is a bit of a cliche, a tired and worn ambassador for children's literature ... "another fact that many people are unaware of is that Dr Seuss's illustrations are steeped in racist propaganda, caricatures, and harmful stereotypes." 

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In Melania's statement on Friday addressing her most recent charitable rejection, she also mentions what would be a third rejection that took place in the past where "a prospective corporate partner refused an opportunity to further our shared philanthropic goals surrounding my visit to Africa."

"Those who attack my initiatives and create the appearance of impropriety are quite literally dream killers," Melania says in the closing of her statement. "They have canceled the hopes and dreams of children by trying to cancel me."

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By Kelly McClure

Kelly McClure is a journalist and fiction writer who lives in New Orleans. She is Salon's Nights and Weekends Editor covering daily news, politics and culture. Her work has been featured in Vulture, The A.V. Club, Vanity Fair, Cosmopolitan, Nylon, Vice, and elsewhere. She is the author of Something is Always Happening Somewhere.

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Aggregate Be Best Cancelled Melania Trump