See what we're chatting about over coffee:
• Soledad O'Brien is heading back to school. The former CNN anchor will join the Harvard Graduate School of Education as a visiting fellow for the next academic year. Her focus will be in public education and its various intersections with gender, income and race. "It's an honor to join the esteemed scholars of the Harvard Graduate School of Education community next year," said O'Brien, a 2000 graduate of Harvard College. "On Appian Way, in the heart of the Ed School campus, a banner reads, 'Education is a Civil Right.' I believe this passionately and look forward to ensuring that right is a reality by working with the students, faculty, and staff at the Harvard Graduate School of Education and the rest of the Harvard University community. This appointment is both an honor and opportunity." [Politico]
• In other Soledad O'Brien news, she's teaming up with The XX Project to continue their monthly Salon Sessions. This month's guest speaker will be Eve. The event will be held on Tuesday, April 30 in New York City. The dinner series brings together influential women to discuss their experiences. To learn more about The XX Project, click here.
• Are American Idol producers trying to shake up the judges panel? According to several reports, both Mariah Carey and Nicki Minaj were up for replacement mid-season. Rumor had it that Jennifer Lopez was being vetted to return to the show. Carey allegedly responded by threatening legal action. Sources say the search to find replacements for both Carey and Minaj have begun for the next season of Idol. [Hollywood Reporter]
• Actor and comedian Craig Robinson said working with Rihanna was fun. He joins the singer in a new comedy, This is the End, slated to premiere in June. When asked how she faired during shooting, Robinson said, "We do a little musical thing. She [Rihanna] was very funny. She is awesome and unaffected and she is super cool… She'll give you a hug right now." [Grio]
• President Obama has committed to yet another democratic fundraiser. He will attend a private event at Hollywood executive Peter Chernin's Californian home on June 7. Tickets range from $10,000 to $32,400. Although Obama will not be running again, the funds will benefit the democratic party. "We need the resources to continue to move our country forward," read the invitation. [Hollywood Reporter]