By Akanke Jackson
(AllHipHop Features) With a name like Mustafa, you have to learn how to be a beast. Jamila Mustafa is an award-winning broadcast journalist from Wilmington, Delaware. Growing up as a child Jamila hated her name because it was foreign. With Jamila meaning “Beautiful” and Mustafa meaning “the chosen one”, she had no idea how worthy her name really is. Jamila started to embrace her name during a class trip to China where she first started realizing why her ancestors created that name. Her parents were so impressed with her natural talent they decided to hire an agent to help build her career. After taking many trips to the Big Apple Jamila finally landed a deal on a hit Fox a television series called “The Philadelphia Eagles Kids Club” the show lasted for three long seasons. With having many talents such as acting, dancing and extreme karate fighting she was destined to become a household name. Confidence and poise have gained Jamila to be featured on Black HBCUBuzz 30 under 30, BET 30 under 30, Young Black and LIT, plus many more. Her goal as an entertainer is to be receiving an Oscar than covering the show.
Ms. Mustafa has made history leading a tour for NBC’s “Hall of Fame Tour” as the youngest headliner ever! After denying her request the first year in 2016, she came back again in 2017 demanding that she is what the tour needs. She toured colleges such as Alabama State University, Bethune Cookman University, and Texas Southern University. During her tour, she raised scholarship money for each school in hopes of spreading knowledge and unity among each other. Her goal is to raise enough money in the school to help pay for their new equipment in order for the students to express themselves.
Jamila’s infamous quote “I am aiming to be significant and not famous” came about when she met Oprah Winfrey. Her mother kept an old news article which called Jamila to be the prophet of her generation. As others would have given anything to meet the Daytime Queen herself, it would be opposite for Jamila. She claims to not know who the legend is, it wasn’t until she did her research that she got a peek into Oprah’s career. The first time she met Ms. Winfrey she had her pen and paper ready. Jamila claims everything she heard Oprah say was very unexpected “she was so before her time, she gave me 3 quotes that I still use today.”
1.) Be true to who you are. 2.) Be successful for something 3.) Always do the right thing
But for young Mustafa she was caught off guard with the simple quotes, she had no idea how these steps could make her an icon. Winfrey’s easy yet complex phrases have help guide Mustafa as a young entrepreneur.
To determine whether your life is a prophecy you have to have a defined feeling of the social world and events to come. A journalist back in 2007, claimed that Jamila will be a star. Here’s an actual quote from the article “Jamila Mustafa on kids Eagle TV show—one day she’s going to be so famous she’s going to hire her family to work for her—she’s going to be a household name.” Growing up in Wilmington, Delaware the options of having a role model was limited. Often she had to use her imagination of what her life would be like if she came from a big city. Which wasn’t hard for the child star, her confidence is shown through her actions, which has intimidated her competition. Her imagination often came to play when she entered competitions in her tween years. Throughout her life journey she’s been a keen player, taking the crown home five times as Delaware’s very own pageant Queen. Mustafa has destroyed the competition when she ran for Ms. Delaware State University. But her success didn’t come from winning the crown, it came when she was able to voice the problems of Black Colleges everywhere not having enough earnings for their scholars. She conquered the dreams of so many little girls around the nation, that she knew many of her competitors wondered why Jamila? And Jamila response is “what’s for me is for me.”
With a mouth as powerful Sojourner Truth, with a mind like Oprah Winfrey, and a fight like Malcolm X, how can she fail? Her journey through life is nothing less of resistant. Every loss she has taken has been a lesson, every step she has taken has been a blessing, and when true talent walks into the room everyone becomes obsolete. The leader of the millennial generation has so many plans for the next year and we can’t wait to watch her grow. It was an honor for us to converse with the next Queen of the Jungle for Women’s History Month, here are some additional questions we asked Jamila:
AllHipHop: During Women’s History Month who do you admire the most?
I would have to say, my mother because she’s the one who encourages me the most throughout my life.
AllHipHop: Does it frustrate you when you see people acting as though they can do your talent.
I think of it as, everyone has their own destiny, I can’t allow myself to get upset if someone has the job I want, I just push myself harder the next time.
AllHipHop: What do you prefer to read as a journalist?
I read books that will make me think, I like to be able to challenge myself as a journalist.
AllHipHop: How do you manage your personal life and your career?
My personal life is my career, all of my friends are in media too. I always plan my time away from work, weeks in advance so I can be with family.
AllHipHop: What’s the most enjoyable part of your job?
I love that all my co-workers are different in their own way. I love how throughout the day there are last minute changes that I can adjust to.