Men arrested at Starbucks receive free tuition for the University of Arizona

Starbucks Rashon Nelson Donte Robinson
Starbucks GMA interview with Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson (Screengrab)


Rashon Nelson and Donte Robinson appeared on Good Morning America to talk about an entrepreneur program they negotiated with the City of Philadelphia and Starbucks after getting arrested landed them in the national spotlight, reports BuzzFeed.

They are taking things in stride and made amends with the coffee-giant by settling for $1 each and a $200,000 entrepreneur grant for high school students in the city.

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And while their settlement doesn’t sit well with many, truth be told, Nelson and Robinson are their brothers’ keepers in the City of Brotherly Love.

The two told Robin Roberts that they are glad to know they have “a seat at the table.”

“The most important thing is the foundation,” Nelson said.

Thanks to this new grant, a program will be set up to help public high school students learn financial literacy and entrepreneurship.

“We feel as though it starts with us, our communities … quote/unquote underserved communities, and teaching them not just about entrepreneurship and proper etiquette, but proper [financial] literacy … about taxes and how to use money as a tool,” Nelson said. “So it’s much deeper than just starting a business.”

The question remains how the program will be funded year to year moving forward. It’s no secret the Philadelphia school system has serious financial woes and major funding issues. So it remains to be seen if the Nelson and Robinson’s bet on this program will be a big-win or a bust.

“This is not just something we want to do for a year with the grant that we are blessed with,” Nelson said. “This is something we want to bring together — and get commitments — so people can … raise money and continue this program, not just in Philadelphia but worldwide.”

According to, the two men have also been “offered the opportunity to complete their undergraduate degrees through the Starbucks College Achievement Plan” at the University of Arizona.

The Starbucks’ college program began at ASU in 2014 and Starbucks employees who work at least 20 hours per week can take classes through ASU Online, and the coffee company will cover their tuition costs.


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