LeBron James Pledges $87 Million for Local Kids to Attend College

Bryan Brandom
(Photo: Getty)

After his Cleveland Cavaliers delivered the city its first major championship in any sport in 52 years, LeBron James must have been in a giving mood.

The Northeastern Ohio native teamed with the University of Akron to commit over $87 million in scholarships to any kid that participates in and completes James' "I Promise" program.

According to the New York Post:

The annual tuition is $9,500, so it’s a $38,000 commitment to each student who qualifies. There are currently 1,100 kids in the program, and 1,200 more are expected to be added in the next four years, according to the Akron Beacon Journal.

Quick math puts the total for 2,300 kids at $38,000 each at just over $87 million.

"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," James said at an event for students at amusement park Cedar Point. "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."

The school, which will work with the LeBron James Family Foundation determine criteria for the scholarship, is renaming its education department the LeBron James Family Foundation College of Education.

"It's the reason I do what I do," said James, who announced the program Thursday while hosting an event for students at Cedar Point Amusement Park. "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."

Over the next five years, James' foundation will work with the university to raise funds for the inaugural class in 2021.

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