Shane Battier surprises 21 Miami Central High students with scholarships

MIAMI (WSVN) - Former Miami Heat player and team employee Shane Battier went through a series of emotions at Miami Central High School, Thursday.

“I’m emotional, right, ’cause to see the look on the kids’ faces, and they’ve been told, ‘No,’ so many times that it’s great for someone to say yes,” Battier said.

The Battier Take Charge Foundation provided 21 students with a ticket to college — a four-year, full tuition scholarship for when they graduate in two years.

“I feel like some kids shouldn’t be underestimated because we can do amazing things,” Taina Senatus said.

“Right now I have good grades, but I can aspire for even more,” Jean Villanueva said. “I’m gonna show them how I work because I want that.”

The scholarships aren’t a free ride from the Shane Battier Take Charge Foundation — it’s a contract, a commitment.

“When you commit to the guide program, the Battier Take Charge Foundation, that ‘I’m gonna stay out of trouble. I’m gonna keep my grades high. I’m gonna show up. I’m gonna work,’ that’s all we require,” Battier said.

Aside from the criteria that goes with the scholarship, there will be personal intervention, monitoring, and, if needed, tough love so children don’t waste the opportunity of a free education.

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