LeBron James Gives 2,300 Under-Privileged Kids From Hometown a Chance for College


LeBron James is making every Republican’s worst nightmare come true. Not only is he a positive role model, bucking against the stereotypes of an inner-city black man, he is now working with the University of Akron to make sure that as many as 2,300 kids in his mentoring program have the opportunity to go to college for free.

The GOP hates educated people. More educated people means fewer Republicans.

James, who grew up poor in Akron, had the advantage of a natural talent that would propel him to stardom. Knowing that not every child from his hometown has that ability, he’s been working with kids through the Lebron James Family Foundation for five years in the “I Promise” program, where poor kids who would have little chance otherwise to get the opportunity to reach amazing goals in education as well as community relations and pride.

Now, with James’ help, those kids will be able to achieve the next step: a fully funded college education.

There are currently 1,000 kids enrolled in “I Promise.” By the time the scholarship program kicks in for the high school graduating class of 2021, there could be as many as 2,300 enrolled. James has promised that each and every one of those kids can go on to get a college education – but they have to earn it first.

The exact details are still being worked out, but the kids will have to perform well in school, maintaining a minimum grade point average and attendance record, meet all the state requirements for standardized testing, and devote some of their free time to community service. The program is specifically designed for under-privileged children who attend Akron public schools.

James was emotional when he rolled out the program at Cedar Point Amusement Park earlier this week:

“It’s the reason I do what I do. 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 novel concept of the potential of a student who sees light at the end of the tunnel is one that has been embraced by Democratic Presidential hopefuls Hillary Clinton and Bernie Sanders and completely ignored by the entire Republican field in favor of worries about abortion and gay marriage. As a nation we are, mostly due to to GOP policies, destroying our future by ignoring our greatest resource. Imagine if every child were given the kind of opportunity James and the University of Akron are offering. Within a decade, our country and our world would be a far better place.


Reprinted with permission from Think Progress, a branch of The Center for American Progress 



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