In honor of the NBA draft, here is an oldie but a goodie. Its a story about a basketball superstar with a huge heart. LeBron James has partnered with the University of Akron to provide four-year scholarships to the students involved in James’ “I promise” program who qualify. The LeBron James Family Foundation will cover tuition and fee’s (currently $9,500 per year) for 1,100 kids. This will cost his foundation a total of $41.8 million.
LeBron wants to give back to the community that helped raise him. He said, “These students have big dreams, and I’m happy to do everything I can to help them get there. They’re going to have to earn it, but I’m excited to see what these kids can accomplish knowing that college is in their futures.”
The students will have to graduate high school within Akron’s public school system and achieve standard testing requirements as well as fulfill a community service obligation.
“It means so much because, as a kid growing up in the inner city and a lot of African-American kids, you don’t really think past high school,” said James, who bypassed college to jump to the NBA. “You don’t really know your future. You hear high school all the time, and you graduate high school and then you never think past that because either it’s not possible or your family’s not financially stable to even be able to support a kid going to college.”
Michele Campbell, the executive director of the LeBron James Family Foundation, said James, who grew up in a single-parent home, became visibly emotional when discussing the impact the program will have on the kids and their families.
“He has a chance to change their futures,” Campbell said. “Not everybody can be an NBA superstar, so to be able to provide the framework to make your dreams come true is overpowering.” The first class eligible for the scholarships will graduate in 2021.