|Club||Gary Franklin||Cal Supreme Select 17U Elite||Los Angeles||-|
|High School||Stephen Norberg|
|Primary Position||Point Guard|
|Hand||Vertical jump||Wingspan||Bench Press (max)|
2017 : 14th Annual Vegas Invitational Tournament - All Tournament Team.
I have been playing basketball year-round since the age of four. I started with my local YMCA, moved on to playing in parks & recreation leagues, played with school teams, and on AAU/club teams. In 2015, my club team, Basketball’s Finest Training - BFT, won the AAU Boys 13U Division 3 National Championship. I have had great success with all of these teams, but my long-standing goal and dream is to play at the collegiate level.
I have a high basketball IQ. I am a leader on the floor who has great court vision. I believe in giving my all while participating in practice, in a game, or in the classroom. I have impeccable work habits and compete well under pressure. I am a fighter who goes after every loose ball. I am also a spark of energy for my team on the court or while sitting on the bench. I don’t quit until the buzzer has sounded.
I will give any college program a loyal, dependable, mature student athlete who understands the value of an education and how to be a positive representative of their institution. I am prepared to work hard for any college basketball program that invests in me.
As the team captain of my high school team the last two years, I have had to definitely had to step up my leadership. Our team is comprised of half seniors and the other half are underclassmen. When I'm on the court, I make sure everyone has their man and are in the right place. When taking a break on the bench, I get the other bench players to rally and cheer.
Off the court, I run the elementary school basketball league. The six teams are comprised of 5th and 6th graders. I tried to evenly place the players on each team so those with more ability can help those with less ability. I have several players from our JV and Varsity teams as coaches. The teams play once a week and culminate with a big party for all players.
To pursue a healthy athletic performance, I make sure I eat healthy food. I don't eat much fast food. Before a game I try to eat light by having a salad. I also try to take a little nap before a game. Usually if I do these two things, I have a great game.
Participating in community service is very special to me because I was born to do it. It’s in my DNA. My parents and grandparents have all been involved in giving back to their communities as public servants and volunteers. They were Teachers, a School Principal, a Firefighter, a Police Lieutenant, and a Registered Nurse. As a young boy, my parents always brought me along while they volunteered. As they worked, I helped out too.
Since the 9th grade, I’ve looked forward to going to the Los Colores Head Start Preschool. There I participate in playing, mentoring, and teaching the kids. I often look at them and wonder if I too was like this in preschool. As a member of the Santa Monica Police Activities League (PAL) Youth Leadership Council (YLC), I do community service at several community events. I especially enjoy working the various food festivals. Not only do we help out, we also get to eat all of the delicious food.
Community service has also been a very humbling experience for me too. During the summer of 2017, I was one of five Chadwick students that traveled to South Dakota to volunteer at the Cheyenne River Reservation. I was inspired to go on this summer community service trip because of my life-changing experiences with community service work at the preschool and PAL.
Prior to leaving for South Dakota, I learned about some of the devastations within the Native American community. I became aware of the high suicide rate among teenagers. I also learned of an ongoing substance abuse problem among the youth and adults. This information I garnered, made me more aware of some situations I might encounter.
Once we arrived the reservation, I instantly saw drastic the differences between Los Angeles and the Cheyenne Reservation. The reservation’s buildings, homes, and the schools were old and rundown. Our lodging at the reservation was one step above camping with the annual Chadwick Outdoor Education trips. We stayed at the reservation’s community center. There were no accommodations to take showers. We slept in sleeping bags on the floor of the multi-purpose room.
During my ten days at the reservation, we helped run a youth summer camp. Running the summer camp was a challenging experience because most of the kids did not have proper manners and as a result, they were difficult to work with. One kid in particular, Emilio, instantly gave me a hard time. He called me the “N-word” when I first met him. I was a bit taken aback by his use of this word towards me. Every time I tried to instruct them to do anything, he resisted. After a few days, I asked him why he continued to defy me. He surprisingly opened up about his hard family life. Listening to him made me appreciative of what I had at home in California. I told him that all the volunteers including me cared for him and wanted to help.
From that point on, Emilio was on his best behavior. I felt with me talking to him, he had a different attitude and point of view. Building that connection with Emilio was really empowering for him and me. As a young volunteer I was able to help younger kids like Emilio, by leading by example. This trip was another life-changing experience for me because I built relationships with a different community and may have impacted their lives.
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