Aside from being the best basketball player in the league, LeBron James is also going above and beyond to help the kids in his community.  Last year James announced that he was pledging $41 million to send 1,100 Akron kids to college as part of the LeBron James Family Foundation.  Now the superstar has taken a major step forward to help those kids even more with the I PROMISE Institute at the University of Akron.

Via the LeBron James Family Foundation:

Today the LeBron James Family Foundation (LJFF) announced it has established the I PROMISE Institute (IPI) on The University of Akron (UA) campus as a resource for its students who earn the guaranteed four-year tuition and general service fees scholarship to The University. The I PROMISE Institute will be located in a currently undeveloped space on the south end of level 3 in InfoCision Stadium and will have a team of educators dedicated to researching best practices, implementing academic interventions, and providing around-the-clock support for its students as they navigate college.

“When we first started this program, I wanted my kids to graduate from high school. But the more we grow as a Foundation, the more we find can be done to give our kids the best chance to be successful,” said LeBron James. “We don’t just want our kids to get to college, we want them to graduate from college. And we want to make sure we are doing everything we can to help them do that.”

With LJFF’s first class of Akron I PROMISE Network students now in 8th grade, the I PROMISE Institute is currently conducting research on resources and support programs around the country to determine the best tactics and procedures to have in place by the time its students arrive on The University of Akron campus in 2021. LJFF has established a governing board of academics from across the country to help oversee this research that will guide the IPI’s curriculum and interventions as it gets to the root of urban youth retention.

In the near term, the I PROMISE Institute will be a home-base for all future high school Akron I PROMISE Network students, acclimating them to life on a college campus while offering programming for students, parents, and their entire families about the logistics and other learnings of the college experience. The creation of the I PROMISE Institute is being funded in part by Sprite®, which has worked with LeBron James since 2003.

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