NBA Star And Stevenson Alum Jalen Brunson Partners With Stevenson Foundation On Student Wellness
SEP 21, 2022 | Stevenson High School
Elite skills certainly helped.
But former Stevenson standout basketball player Jalen Brunson is convinced that an overall focus on wellness, particularly proper nutrition and fitness, was also key in helping him ascend to a level he only once dreamed of as a kid: NBA superstar.
Brunson, now a highly regarded guard with the New York Knicks, returned to Stevenson last weekend to be inducted into the Stevenson Athletic Hall of Fame as part of the Class of 2022.
But his visit was two-fold. Brunson also announced that he is partnering with the Stevenson Foundation to establish the Jalen Brunson Patriot Wellness Initiative, which will be backed by a $300,000 philanthropic gift from his charitable foundation Second Round. The Initiative is designed to support physical and mental wellness for financially under-resourced students.
“Wellness has always been an important part of my life,” said Brunson, who began his NBA career with the Dallas Mavericks in 2018 after leading Villanova to two NCAA championships and Stevenson to its first boys basketball state championship in 2015.
“Proper nutrition and fitness are core values that my parents introduced to my sister and I early on. I am very proud to partner with the Stevenson Foundation and my alma mater ~ a place that was integral to my growth and resilience during my own teenage years. Our goal is to empower the next generation of Patriots, both students and families, to prioritize health and wellness practices so they may thrive in all aspects of their lives.”
The Jalen Brunson Patriot Wellness Initiative acknowledges that physical and mental wellness go hand-in-hand and will expand on the Stevenson Foundation’s current work to serve financially-fragile students. The partnership will place a strategic emphasis on ensuring equitable access to essentials, tools and knowledge needed to foster lifelong wellness practices. This will include expanded access to healthy food and nutrition information as well as necessities, such as athletic wear, shoes and accessories, to enable an active lifestyle. The Initiative will also provide families with basic medical supplies, access to physicals and vaccines as well as mindfulness and relaxation support.
“The impact of Jalen’s legacy is still felt throughout the halls of our school. His success today is the culmination of, not just his hard work, but his dedication to his own fitness and well-being,” Stevenson Superintendent Dr. Eric Twadell said.
“So it is fitting that he has come to us with this passion and interest to support whole student and family wellness. His generous support of our Foundation, and the programming that it makes possible, will help us go even further in ensuring our mission of success for every student.”