NEW YORK, May 22, 2019 /PRNewswire/ -- With athletics, education, and community engagement as much a part of the national conversation for today's youth as ever, the Foot Locker Foundation continues its support of college access for outstanding student athletes through its Foot Locker Scholar Athletes Program. For the eighth consecutive year, the Foot Locker Foundation has awarded $20,000 scholarships to 20 exceptional students, making college accessible and affordable at a time when most students are faced with increased costs of attending college.
Seniors William Sands of San Antonio, TX, and Alayssia Townsell of Stockton, CA, are two of the incredible 20 students who were awarded the prestigious Foot Locker Scholar Athletes Scholarship. Each is an exemplary role model in athletic ability, academic achievement and community involvement and serves as an inspiration for future scholar athletes.
William Sands is paving the way to a brighter future through sheer determination. A two-sport athlete on his varsity football and track & field teams, William's memorable moment was winning the 2017 Football District Championship. Academically, William excels with a 4.1 GPA, is a Summa Cum Laude graduate, a National Wendy's High School Heisman School winner and a College Board AP Scholar. A social entrepreneur at heart, William founded the Work Equals Success Foundation to teach young children safety protocols and procedures in football, reaching approximately 300 student athletes in two years. The Foot Locker Scholar Athlete Scholarship will aid William as he pursues his education at Vanderbilt University, working towards a degree in electrical/biomedical engineering.
This year, amidst the stories of thousands of deserving students, another dynamic scholar athlete stood out. Selected for her stellar performance on and off the court, Alayssia Townsell is the embodiment of a world-class athlete and academic achiever. Along with playing varsity volleyball and running track & field, Alayssia has demonstrated her leadership skills as captain of her basketball varsity team and by leading her teammates to victory as part of the all-league basketball first team. Individually, she was named varsity girls basketball MVP and has won All-Tourney Leading Scorer (Stagg Basketball Tournament). A stellar student, Alayssia has maintained a 3.96 GPA and is Vice President of the Black Student Union. Overcoming personal challenges, Alayssia's story is inspirational as she has harnessed her struggles to give back to her community. Alayssia is an exceptional ambassador to her community, launching a college preparatory club on-campus to help sophomores and juniors prepare for college and serving as president of the G.I.R.L.S. club, an organization to mentor low-income, at-risk girls in Stockton.
Alayssia is a true symbol of the values of the Foot Locker Scholar Athletes Program, and the Foundation is proud to announce her as the recipient of the Ken C. Hicks Scholarship. This additional $5,000 scholarship (totaling $25,000) is awarded each year to one of the 20 inductees for exemplifying superior academic achievement, passion for her community, and a true love of the game. It is named in honor of Foot Locker's former Chairman and CEO.
"The Foot Locker Scholar Athletes program continues to be an important platform to celebrate some of the most talented and exceptional young scholar athletes across the country, like William and Alayssia, who are making a tremendous impact within their communities," states Richard A. Johnson, Chairman & Chief Executive Officer of Foot Locker, Inc. "We remain deeply committed to investing in and empowering today's youth by providing the opportunity to attend college and pursue their dreams."
The availability of scholarship programs, such as the Foot Locker Scholar Athletes Program, can make a real difference in the affordability of a college education. This year's 20 winners will join the program's eight previous classes of Foot Locker Scholar Athletes, which represents 160 total scholarship recipients since the program's inception in 2011. With the 2019 Class, the Foot Locker Foundation will have invested more than $3 million in the education and future of some of America's most promising scholar athletes. Supporting this all-star program is Fastweb, a trusted scholarship and financial aid resource used by students and some of the scholarship winners to help find opportunities to pay for school.
This year's awardees come from diverse backgrounds and represent a variety of sports disciplines, personal achievements, and community involvement. Despite overcoming economic hardships, loss, natural disasters, and chronic illnesses, these young people have created inspiring opportunities through leadership in athletics, academics and within their communities
About Foot Locker Foundation: Founded in 2001,Foot Locker Foundation, is the philanthropic arm of Foot Locker, Inc., a specialty athletic retailer that operates approximately 3,200 stores in 27 countries in North America, Europe, Asia, Australia and New Zealand. Over the years, Foot Locker, Inc. has developed meaningful partnerships and programs to improve and enrich the educational opportunities for youth across the country.
About Fastweb: Fastweb, a top site in the Monster network, is the nation's recognized leader in helping students pay for school, by providing scholarship and financial aid information, as well as information on jobs and internships. As the oldest and most popular free online scholarship matching service, one out of three college-bound seniors use the site and more than 50 million users have benefitted from Fastweb's information and services. Fastweb lets students create personalized profiles that can be matched against its expansive databases of colleges and scholarships. To learn more about Fastweb, visit www.fastweb.com and follow Fastweb on social media for the latest on paying for school all year long: Twitter (at @PayingForSchool); Facebook; Pinterest; Google+.