Magic Johnson donates thousands of dollars to Saginaw Promise - ABC 12 – WJRT – Flint, MI

Magic Johnson donates thousands of dollars to Saginaw Promise

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(04/09/13) - It's a magical promise that NBA Hall of famer Ervin Magic Johnson is helping to keep. 

Tuesday, Johnson was in Saginaw raising thousands of dollars for the Saginaw Promise Scholarship.

The Promise Scholarship means Saginaw High School students who want to go to college can. Even Johnson opened his wallet to help make dreams a reality.

"This is probably one of the most difficult times for young people, especially in urban cities. Because the drop out rate is so high right now, so we must pay attention to young people and that's why I'm here," Johnson said.

Johnson hopes his message will help everyone understand the importance of education.

He's teaming up with Saginaw Public Schools to raise money for the Promise Scholarship. The program makes it possible for qualifying high school students to receive scholarships for their first two years of tuition.

"A lot of times what we have to do is go to college. Especially here in the state of Michigan. The jobs that we use to have. My parents worked at General Motors for 30 years. That's not happening anymore. So we have to have our young people get educated, go to go to college and then look for a great career and excel at that career. That's why this is so important to me," Johnson said.

Johnson donated $100-,000 out of his own pocket. Then his company donated $25,000.

Several items were up for auction at Tuesday night's charity event. Knowing that the money raised will help people, like high school junior Nate Riley, makes all the difference.

"I have dreams to go to a very big college, so I feel it's very special for him to come here to help me get to where I want to be in life. I feel that's a good thing for us," Riley said.

People traveled from all across the state to be here. Saginaw Superintendent Dr. Carlton Jenkins knows that the organization has a tremendous impact on the students.

"Just the thought of the promise insinuates the fact that children are going to be looking at something post secondary. That has inspired families to say my child can and will go to college," Jenkins said.

The goal is to raise $700,000 this year. If you would like to donate to Saginaw Promise, call 989-755-0545.

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