The Foot Locker Foundation Celebrates 10 Years of Scholarships with The Foot Locker Scholar Athlete Recipient Class of 2020-2021
May 26, 2021
Robert Covington, NBA Forward for the Portland Trailblazers and Christian Crosby, Personality for the Philadelphia 76ers “Zoom-in” to Celebrate
Today, The Foot Locker Foundation announced its 2020-2021 class of Scholar Athletes, which includes twenty exceptional high school students from across the country. Each winner exemplifies academic excellence and strong skills in sports and within their communities – and is set to receive a $20,000 scholarship for the school of their choice.
The availability of scholarship programs can make a real difference in the affordability of a college education, especially to diverse students in low-income communities. Every year, the Foot Locker Foundation and Foot Locker, Inc. commit to its purpose of supporting inclusivity and diversity within the community.
“We know that a quality education provides significant opportunities and breaks down barriers for today’s youth,” said Richard Johnson, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Foot Locker, Inc. “No young person should be forced to sacrifice their education because of cost. Our goal is to provide financial support to these exceptional individuals and help take that burden off their shoulders so they can focus on what matters – their academic work and personal growth. I’m incredibly proud of this year’s winners who have overcome so much, all while working tirelessly in their communities to drive meaningful change.”
Last June, the Foot Locker Foundation through Foot Locker, Inc. pledged to increase scholarship funding by 50% over the next five years for Black, Indigenous, and people of color (BIPOC). This community investment is powered by the organization’s Leading Education and Economic Development (LEED) initiative, a $200 million commitment focused on education and economic development within the Black community. To date, 64% of Foot Locker scholarship recipients come from a diverse background and or community.
Foot Locker, Inc. Foundation has a deep commitment to funding academic achievement in many capacities. In addition to investing in the future of scholar athletes, since 2011, the Foundation has awarded more than $600,000 in scholarships to internal associates via its Foot Locker Associate Scholarship (FLAS) program.
This year, through the LEED initiative, the organization expanded its internal scholarship program. Over the next five years, the Foundation will add 50 scholarships dedicated to Black team members – a $250,000 investment. Today, the Foundation also announced the 30 team members receiving scholarship funds.
To honor their achievements, Foot Locker Foundation ambassador and social influencer, Christian Crosby, caught up virtually with some this year’s scholar athletes, giving them an opportunity to talk about their struggles and successes from the past year. NBA forward, Robert Covington also joined the celebratory conversations by crashing group Zoom sessions hosted by the Foundation to congratulate them firsthand -- Covington also offered additional words of support in honor of Mental Health Awareness Month.
“Despite the challenges of the past year, these seniors have demonstrated remarkable dedication to their academic and athletic careers and the strides they’ve made to create change in their communities are extraordinary,” said the Portland Trail Blazers Forward. “On behalf of myself and the Foot Locker Foundation, we’re honored to support these student athletes as they move on to their next chapter.”
This year’s celebrations come at a time after many students have overcome obstacles because of the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and the ongoing rise in cost of a college education. The Foot Locker Foundation proudly supports the Foot Locker Scholarship program and its efforts to invest in college accessibility for the next generation of leaders and athletes.
In alphabetical order, this year’s exemplary Foot Locker Scholar Athletes include:
Alana Fields (Louisville, KY), Aly Conyers (Columbia, SC), Amelia Marcum (Denver, CO), Benjamin Cervantez (San Francisco, CA), Ellaney Matarese (La Cañada Flintridge, CA), Ethan Horvath (Granger, IN), Hayden Tucker Tyree (Lincoln University, PA), Hussein Amuri (Winooksi, VT), Jocelyn Mccullough (Falls Church, VA), Jordan Bryant (Miami, FL), Julia Rhee (Atlanta, GA), Karson Baldwin (Strongsville, OH), Kayla Austin (Bolingbrook, IL), Lucien Gandarias (Clinton, WA), Malik Salami (Houston, TX), Matthew Tengtrakool (Burlington, MA), Molly Cantillon (Livington, NJ), Naima Blanco-norberg (San Francisco, CA), Siboniso (Sihle) Mthethwa (Orange, VA) and Taylor Smith (Smyrna, GA).