Basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar is helping to teach STEM skills to Black and Latino students
Basketball legend Kareem Abdul-Jabbar has a lot more on his mind these days than the sport.
“It’s a social justice issue; giving kids a better idea of where they can go with their education,” Abdul-Jabbar said.
When the pandemic hit, the foundation adjusted and used eco-vans to bring the camp to individual recreation centers and playgrounds, while remaining socially distant.
“We try to give them their first experience with science and let them know it’s not something exotic, it just takes application and they can learn a lot,” the six-time National Basketball Champion said.
“It’s been very gratifying for me to see the light turn on with the kids, when they started to realize what’s possible and where they can go with this information.”
“Kareem and I both grew up in housing projects,” said Chan, who is Hispanic.
“I saw all the challenges there and how easy it was to basically fall into the cracks.”
In addition to lack of opportunities, there is the issue of understanding money matters, he added.
“If you give them financial literacy, this income inequality debate that we’re talking about today instantly disappears quicker than Houdini can make it disappear,” Chan said.
“I would see my legacy as being a success when the kids that we’re trying to reach end up with jobs as engineers, and scientists, and inventors,” he said.