Loni Love has won an Emmy and an NAACP Image Award while wowing millions of viewers each morning as co-host of The Real.
A comedian, who is not only funny but as brilliant and talented as anyone in the business, Love is preparing to host Black Music Honors on Bounce TV in June.
A proud alumnus of the Historically Black Prairie View A&M University, and a celebrated member of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority, Love stopped by the National Newspaper Publishers Association’s morning news program, “Let It Be Known,” to discuss her career, the Deltas, and her latest book, “I Tried to Change So You Don’t Have To: True Life Lessons.”
“I’ve had some bumps and bruises along the way, but now I’m okay,” exclaimed Love, who graduated from Prairie View A&M University with a degree in engineering.
Love was tapped as the commencement speaker for her alma mater’s 2020 graduating class, but the pandemic deprived those students of an in-person celebration.
When the university decided to hold in-person graduation this month, officials reached back out to an excited Love.
“I am a proud alumnus, I graduated with a bachelor’s of science in electrical engineering, and I always shout out my schools, I always shout out HBCUs, and I am a proud Delta,” Love proclaimed.
“I’m going to give the speech for the 2020 graduates who didn’t get it last year,” she continued. “I’m excited to go back and give those students the commencement speech that they didn’t have.”
Besides her status as a Prairie View graduate, Love has undoubtedly proved a model for what students can achieve.
“For a long time, when I was trying to break into Hollywood – even before Hollywood – I was an engineer and thought I had be a certain way,” Love explained, noting that her book contains the more in-depth explanation.
“Imagine being a 22-year-old Black woman from an HBCU, and they put you in a group with 50-something White men.”
“I [decided] that I have to be me. Society at that point (the 1990s) was – I was like an invisible person. I thought, ‘maybe if I act like a man, go camping like they talk about on Monday mornings… I had to be myself. This book is a series of stories that are funny, deep, and inspirational. Things I tried to be, like fake it until I make it. Like I was rich, but I was really broke. I was a rapper called MC Whack. Finally, I became myself, a comic who wanted to show love, wanted to be encouraging and wanted to be that hopeful person. That’s where I got the title. The whole thing I stress is that if you don’t learn anything today, learn how you are proud of who you are. Don’t try to be someone else.”
She encouraged young girls to understand that they don’t have to have that “Euro-centric look.”
“I’m telling that little girl who is not a size zero that you are okay. You study, go to school, find some friends, and a decent dude, and you will build yourself a life. We have our ‘Beckys,’ and we have our Keshia. Ain’t nothing wrong with Keshia.”