Name: Jessye Norman
Profession: World Renowned Opera Singer
Alma Mater: Howard University
Graduation Date: 1967
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Major: Music Literature
Hometown: Augusta, Georgia

Interesting Facts: Jessye Norman attended Howard University on a full scholarship. She was inducted into the Georgia Hall of Fame in 2000 and has more than 35 prestigious distinctions and honorary doctorates. Norman also is a distinguished member of the prestigious international music fraternity Sigma Alpha Iota.

While still a young college student at Howard University studying voice, Jessye Norman had already begun to make a name for herself. She sang in the school’s choir and even nabbed the National Society of Arts and Letters singing competition in 1967. Norman later went on to study music at the graduate level but it was a move to Europe that kick-started her career, and the diva was born.

Norman went on to cement her claim as the most dramatic operatic soprano via international and stateside operas the world over. From Berlin and London to Philadelphia and New York, she dazzled the world with her rich and emotive voice. It was also this voice that helped her win some of the world’s most coveted awards, including multiple Grammy Awards and the highest performing arts award in the US: the Kennedy Center Honor, which she was bestowed in 1997.

Today, Norman still continues to wow crowds with her rich soprano voice. Last year, President Barack Obama awarded her with a National Medal of Arts for her outstanding achievement and support of the arts. That continuous and unwavering support continues today via the Jessye Norman School of the Arts, which is an academic intuition for gifted middle school performing arts students in her native Augusta, GA.