The Bronx Times article highlights the efforts to honor the memory of Brandon Hendricks-Ellison, a talented basketball player who was tragically killed in 2020. The community renamed East 156th Street and Park Avenue in the Bronx as Hendricks-Ellison Boulevard, commemorating his impact. In addition, the Oyate Group established the Brandon Hendricks Scholarship to support college-bound high school seniors from the Bronx. The scholarship amount has been increased to $20,000 for each of the two recipients this year, providing long-term support throughout their four-year degrees. The organization aims to break the cycle of poverty through education and hopes that the scholarship winners will have a positive influence on future generations.
Muhamed Bayo, one of the initial recipients of the Brandon Hendricks Scholarship, shared his experience and gratitude. As a junior at Boston College, Bayo emphasized the vital role the scholarship played in helping him navigate the challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic during his first year of college. The financial support allowed him to lead a more normal college life, pursue extracurricular activities, and overcome unexpected expenses. Bayo also expressed his desire to give back to his community by assisting other high school students facing similar difficulties.
Since its inception in 2020, the Oyate Group has provided $100,000 in scholarships, sending 15 students from the Bronx to college. Beyond the financial assistance, the organization aims to preserve Hendricks-Ellison’s legacy as a successful athlete and dedicated student. His former basketball coach, Nigel Thompson, described him as a thoughtful and caring individual and called for an end to senseless violence. The trial of the man accused of killing Hendricks-Ellison, Najhim Luke, has faced delays, and he is yet to be convicted. As applications for the Brandon Hendricks Scholarship are currently open, the Oyate Group continues its mission to support Bronx students in their pursuit of higher education.
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