Stay In School Event - Dever-McCormack Middle School
DORCHESTER, Mass. – More than 400 Dever-McCormack middle school students gathered Wednesday afternoon in their school gymnasium to hear Celtics Legend Dana Barros, Lucky, and Celtics Director of Community Relations and Player Development Matt Meyersohn speak to them about P.R.I.D.E. (Perseverance, Respect, Integrity, Decisions, Education).
P – Barros spoke about perseverance. He told the students that he always had a passion for basketball. He would play all day, every day. Many people told him he would never be a great basketball player because of his height. However, he persevered and didn’t let the skepticism deter him from his dreams. Because he didn’t give up, he was able to go to Boston College on a full athletic scholarship and ultimately became an NBA All-Star playing for 11 seasons.
R – Lucky discussed the importance of respect. He urged the youth to respect their teachers, their education and most importantly themselves. Their futures were limitless, he said, but without respect it would be hard to reach their goals.
I – “Integrity means doing the right thing even when no one is watching,” said Meyersohn. An avid basketball player in his youth, Meyersohn, like Barros, had dreams of being an elite player. However, he admitted to the students that he wasn’t good enough and that was ok. Because he lived his life with integrity, he was able to make a living that involved three things that were most important to him: education, community service and basketball.
D – Lucky spoke on how decisions can impact a person’s life dramatically. “It’s easy to do what your friends are doing even if you know it’s wrong,” he said. “Just remember that there are repercussions for everything. Instead make positive decisions that get you closer to your goals.”
E – To end the speaking portion of the assembly, Barros closed with the word education. He stressed how important it was to take education seriously. “I went to Boston College on a full scholarship,” said Barros. “Today, it cost about $55,000 a year to go to BC. Now is the time for you all to focus on school and make good grades. You don’t have to be good at an athletic sport to get a scholarship. You all can succeed in school and make good grades and receive academic scholarships.”
After the event kicked off with a basketball clinic for 20 students who worked on their ball handling and shooting skills it closed with a Lucky dunk show. The students went crazy for the dunks that including a 360-degree flip mid-air.
Following the dunk show, students went back to their classrooms but not before teachers expressed the gratitude to Barros, Lucky and Meyersohn. The message was inspiring and they knew their students took in all the information, they said!