Earlier this year, LeBron James announced that he would be providing over 1,000 scholarships to University of Akron students through his LeBron James Family Foundation. This caught the attention of First Lady Michelle Obama who invited LeBron to be apart of her new “Better Make Room” education initiative.
Designed to encourage and empower students to continue their education after high school, BetterMakeRoom.org allows students to post pictures and messages about their collegiate aspirations.
“There’s absolutely nothing more important than education, it is the absolute best investment that young people can make in their futures. I just don’t think we talk about that enough. We don’t shine a light on that” said the First Lady during a Q&A session moderated by ESPN’s Michael Wilbon.
She and LeBron spoke to nearly 3,000 University of Akron students and several parents about making education attainable through the program.
LeBron also shared why he decided to leave the Miami Heat and return home to Ohio and the Cleveland Cavaliers. “…Reading and seeing what my community was going through while I was away, it kind of hit home for me in understanding how big my influence is and how important my muscle is right now has nothing to do with the game of basketball.”
He added, “I can sit here today going on Year 2 since I’ve come back home and seeing I’ve set up something I can be proud of. And not proud because I’ve used my name, but proud of the fact that these kids have something to look forward to.”
LeBron said that he wished he could have attended college but at age 17, based on he and his mother’s financial situation, it was in his best interest to go straight to the NBA. Between his foundation and Obama’s Better Make Room movement, he hopes parents and students never have to question whether or not college is an option.
“…There are so many kids that have so many dreams, and those dreams get shut off because of so many different reasons,” he bagan. “It could be a family situation or it could be just they don’t believe that their dreams can become reality. With this education program that we’re setting up, it allows that dream to become real.”