It may be summer for kids across Northeast Ohio, but it’s also a chance for a group of students in the LeBron James Family Foundation (LJFF) to prepare for their first year in high school.
“I’m a high schooler now,” said Miah Massey.
Massey, entering 9th grade at East High School, will be beginning a new journey in the fall of 2017. She’s part of the LJFF’s I Promise program.
“You know that you’re getting a full ride to scholarship, so it makes you want to do better in everything that you do.”
Massey and about 200 others are part of the first class of LJFF students. If the students meet a certain set of requirements and graduate from Akron Public Schools, they will be among the first students to receive a scholarship to the University of Akron.
The foundation has helped to encourage and provide a mentorship program for the students to help guide them through school.
“Each year, you see more progress, more maturity, and you see better results in school,” said Simonne Wright, mother of Jamil Wright who will be entering Akron’s STEM High School.
Wright has his hopes set on becoming an engineer.
“I like how things operate and work.”
Massey hopes to become a counselor.
“I just want to help people.”
Keith Leichty, APS coordinator for school improvement, has watched the students grow over the past five years, both personally and academically.
“It’s still about keeping their promise and committing to being at school and working every day,” said Leichty.
There’s more to come for LeBron and the foundation. This year, LeBron announced that the foundation will be teaming up with Akron Public Schools to open up an new school for LJFF students. The school is expected to open in the fall of 2018.
Jamil Wright said LeBron’s commitment to his hometown doesn’t go unnoticed.
“I think Lebron really helped me as a better person because I look up to him, and he’s a role model and I just want to say ‘good job’ to him.”