Robert F. Smith, African-American businessman, investor and philanthropist, born 1 December 1962 in Colorado to two parents with PhDs, Mr. Smith trained as an engineer at Cornell University, earning his BS in Chemical Engineering. Following his MBA from Columbia Business School with honors. On Sunday 19 May 2019 that he will wipe out student debt for the entire 2019 of 400 graduating class at Morehouse College. The gift is worth an estimated $40 million. Robert F. Smith Biography and Profile.