LeBron James pledges to pay college tuition for over 1,000 kids

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SANDUSKY, Ohio — He may be one of professional sport’s more controversial personalities, but love him or hate him, LeBron James is about to make a huge impact, this time off the court.

On Thursday the NBA superstar announced that his foundation will pair up with the University of Akron to pay full-ride scholarships for over 1,000 children through his I Promise program based in Akron.

“As a kid growing up in the inner city and as an African-American kid, you don’t really think past high school because it’s not possible or your family can’t support you,” James said in an interview with ESPN. “For us to be able to do something like this … it means so much.”

Currently, the LeBron James Family Foundation offers support to kids from third to seventh grade. The new partnership will extend the help a step further, covering tuition to students who meet the program’s requirements. The first scholarships will go out in 2021.

Currently about 1,100 students are eligible, and a year’s tuition at the University of Akron stands around $9,500, so if you do the math, $9,500 x 4 years x 1,100 kids comes out to $41.8 million.

That’s nearly two full years of James’ current salary on the Cleveland Cavaliers.