Mayor Landrieu, National Basketball Players Association Award First-Ever Midnight Basketball Scholarships To Improve Job Readiness

NEW ORLEANS – On Saturday, Sept. 16, Mayor Landrieu and the National Basketball Players Association Foundation (NBPA Foundation) presented the first round of Midnight Basketball scholarships to three Season 15 participants at the final game of the season. The scholarships will assist recipients with improving job readiness and educational advancement.

         “Across 15 seasons, Midnight Basketball has engaged over 13,000 participants providing access to jobs, educational opportunities, workforce training and community role models,” said Mayor Mitch Landrieu. “We are grateful to partner with the National Basketball Players Associations Foundation to expand the efforts of Midnight Basketball to impact the lives of countless young men and women by connecting them to services.”

         Season 15 Midnight Basketball Scholarship recipients include Cornell Parquet, Narvin Reed and Trenton Anderson. Parquet will use the scholarship funds to help pay for his tuition at Southern University of New Orleans and will intern with Elevate Next, learning sports training and educational strategies. Reed will apply his scholarship toward acquiring his Information Technology credentials and will intern with the City of New Orleans’ Office of Information Technology and Innovation. Lastly, Anderson will use his scholarship toward his tuition at the University of New Orleans and will intern with ResCare in the Human Resources Department.

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         National Basketball Players Association Foundation executive director Sherrie Deans said, "Participants in Midnight Basketball enjoy the competition and sheer fun of playing basketball, while giving themselves the ability to connect with resources for education, job training and other tools that they can use to enhance the success of their lives.  This is why our players are so proud to support Midnight Basketball and to provide these scholarships. We look forward to continuing our involvement with this unique and valuable program in the coming years.”

         During the 2017 NBA All-Star Weekend, the NBPA Foundation made a scholarship commitment to Midnight Basketball of $50,000 per year for the next three years. The NBPA Foundation’s commitment will provide select Midnight Basketball participants the opportunity for education and training programs in New Orleans.

         Network for Economic Opportunity executive director Ashleigh Gardere said, “We are excited to work with Midnight Basketball to continue to create pathways to prosperity for the people of New Orleans. We are proud of the hard work of each of our scholarship recipients, and we look forward to great things from each of them. ”

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         The City of New Orleans along with the New Orleans Pelicans, Domino’s Pizza, PlayNOLA and DJ Wild Wayne, hosted the fifteenth season of NOLA FOR LIFE Midnight Basketball at Stallings St. Claude Recreation Center, 4300 St. Claude Ave. Throughout the season, players were able to sign up for scholarship opportunities from the NBPA Foundation.

         Midnight Basketball is a part of Mayor Landrieu’s comprehensive Murder Reduction Strategy, NOLA FOR LIFE and reaches young men who may be at risk of being impacted by violent crime in the city. Since its launch in January 2012, the program has offered more than 13,000 participants access to jobs, job training, education and other resources, city reps said.

         For more information about the scholarship program

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