Belaire High Basketball Player Meets Idol, Shaq
- December 13, 2011
He Makes Time to Meet Entire School Team, Buys Student a Nook
On the evening of December 2, Nikki Young, an 11th grader at Belaire High School, hurried from her high school basketball game, jumped into a track suit without changing her uniform and made a beeline for the Barnes & Noble store at Perkins Rowe. She was on her way for a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity – to meet her idol, National Basketball Association great Shaquille O’Neal.
O’Neal who was at the store for a public signing of his new autobiography, “Shaq Uncut,” was expecting to meet Young (pictured left with Shaq), who won a local high school student essay contest for the privilege of meeting her hero. In her essay, entitled “Why I Want to Meet Shaq,” Young said she has dreamed of being a professional athlete all her life and has looked up to legends like O’Neal.
However, he was a little surprised when the entire high school basketball team showed up, as well. Shaq took time to pose for photos with all the team members, signed a book for Young and even surprised her by purchasing her an electronic Nook Tablet book reader.
In the essay, Young wrote, “From his start at LSU is when I first heard of Shaquille O’Neal, because you can’t live in Baton Rouge and have never heard of the one and only Shaq! He has broken records and set milestones that no other player has at LSU. Standing at a mere 7 foot 1, his dramatic build is something I would love to see in person, because you don’t come across many 7 footers and you definitely will not see them every day.”
Young continued, “Also, Shaq’s basketball career has been a huge inspiration to me. … As a junior at Belaire High School, I am more in love with basketball than I have ever been, and with my college career quickly approaching I’m determined to turn my dreams into a future reality. I plan to attend either LSU or the University of Texas. Shaq’s work ethic and determination to be successful has inspired me that no matter where I have come from or what situation I may be in, as long as I follow my dreams and work hard to accomplish them anything in life is possible.
Principal Brister in Washington, D.C., to Accept McKinley Middle School’s Second Blue Ribbon Award
On Tuesday, November 13, 2012, Principal Herman Brister (pictured, left) and the school’s Teacher of the Year, Lynn Williamson (right), were in Washington, D.C., accepting McKinley Middle Academic Magnet School’s National Blue Ribbon Award from U.S. Department of Education’s Director of National Blue Ribbon Schools Program Aba Kumi (center). The event, which recognized some 314 schools from across the United States, was held at the Omni Hotel. Click herefor story.
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