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  • Writer's pictureJoanne Jacobs

Rhodes scholar: Mom finagled a better school

“Hazim Hardeman’s mother wanted a better school than the family’s North Philadelphia neighborhood could offer her son,” writes Susan Snyder on “So she falsified the family’s address and sent him to Shawmont in Roxborough.”

Hazim Hardeman is Temple’s first Rhodes Scholar. Photo: Tom Gralish/

Hardeman, 23, a 2017 magna cum laude graduate of Temple University, has been awarded a Rhodes scholarship to study at Oxford University in England.

Hardeman “got off track” in high school, when  his mother moved to Atlanta for a year and a half, leaving him with his older sister. He began failing classes.

Then his mother returned. He graduated on time from a charter school, but his 2.3 GPA wasn’t good enough for Temple.

So he went to community college, where he qualified for the honors program, then transferred to Temple.

“At Temple, he sat in the front row in class and met professors who helped to shape his scholarly goals, writes Snyder. “He also had a research stint at Cornell University and worked in the Philadelphia mayor’s office, preparing a report on how better playgrounds could improve the city’s child-care facilities.”

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