Educating Athletes is a non-profit program with an unprecedented youth enrichment and educational initiative for disadvantaged high school athletes that have the potential of earning athletic college scholarships and face the growing challenge of opioids, concussions and other sports risks. The program is operated by volunteers who have mentored over 500 student athletes through the process of high school athletics and becoming productive members of their community. In partnership with NFL players and alumni, college coaches, and other non-profit organizations, we have designed a program that addresses the physical, mental and personal development of our students.
1) Every year thousands of student-athletes are overlooked by college coaches, not because they are not talented enough, but because most coaches can't find them. More than 80% of the nation’s top collegiate opportunities are outside the Division IA level, and the majority of those programs have an average recruiting budget of less than $200,000. This helps to explain why coaches from the nation’s 1,800 colleges overlook thousands of student-athletes every year.
In a time of rising inequality and low social mobility, improving the quality and access to education has the potential to increase equality of opportunity for disadvantaged Americans. Athletics is often viewed as a way out of an underprivileged neighborhood but physical talent is only one of many decisive factors for awarding an athletic scholarship. Without a comprehensive understanding of the process, it is difficult for students and parents to attain their proper college match.
2) Opioids - In recent studies on youth participants in high-injury sports like football and wrestling, it was found that these athletes had approximately 50% higher odds of nonmedical use of opioids than people of the same age who did not participate in these sports
3) Concussion rates for athletes under age 19 who play tackle football have doubled over the last decade, most occurring during practices. Concussions can occur with a blow to the head through helmet to helmet contact, and if undiagnosed and left untreated can lead to permanent brain damage. “Subconcussive hits,” or repeated blows to the head that don’t result in concussions can, over a long period of time, have long term health effects, too – primarily chronic traumatic encephalopathy (CTE), a progressive degenerative disease of the brain found in athletes (and others) with a history of repetitive brain trauma.
Our mission is to inform and empower our student-athletes by cultivating their talent, education and core values to help them achieve their full potential.
SELECTION AND EVALUATION
Student athletes are nominated by their high school coach and selected based on our evaluation of their athletic ability, educational attainment, work ethic, interview, and family need.
Through a series of online meetings and courses, the student athlete and their parents obtain:
SAT/ACT test preparation and tutoring
An understanding of the athletic scholarship process, and school selection criteria
Other sessions include NCAA compliance/recruiting rules, financial literacy, leadership skills
Opioid and concussion detection/education
Live stream conferences and online courses
LIFE SKILLS SEMINARS
Professional/college athletes and speakers share their expertise during monthly live webcasts that promote self-esteem, discipline, leadership and the pursuit of education. The life skill course helps the athlete build the skills they need to be a winner in the classroom, sports and in life. It addresses issues like work ethic, self-control, values, and those things that define you as a brand. It also covers topics such as off-the-field conduct; choices and consequences; perception versus reality; drug-free sports and life after sports.
College athletes that graduate the program are also taught to 'give back' by attending camps and mentoring new HS student-athletes. We keep in touch with our alumni and encourage them to successfully complete their college education during their scholarship eligibility period.