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Masters Criminology, Black Football Player

While I graduated from XXXX University in May of 2013 with my undergraduate degree in Criminology, I received a full athletic scholarship for 4 years and continued to play football through December of 2013. Winning the Big 12 Conference’s Player of the Week Award for XXU’s NCAA Division 1 Football Team in September of 2013 was an especially sweet, crowning achievement. I was not, however, drafted by the NFL. Thus, football is over for me since I have no interest in a professional career in sports except as an athlete. Now, therefore, I want to score points with my mind rather than my body and I am equally determined to succeed and excel.

A young African-American man, my father is a minister and he has been very influential in my life as a role model, particularly his deep commitment to our community. He has always struggled to instill in me a profound appreciation for moral and ethical values and the importance of making a contribution to our society, especially our fellow African-Americans. This is the primary reason why I was inspired to complete my undergraduate studies in Criminology, with a minor in American Ethics, to prepare myself to contribute to the achievement of greater levels of social justice in America of tomorrow, especially for African-Americans whose presence in the criminal justice system has always been grossly disproportionate, ever since they were first freed from slavery and began to be incarcerated in large numbers (rather than lynched—especially in the south, where I am from).

This is not to say that I have excelled as a student of either history or social issues. Frankly, my college years were very much dominated by excelling as a football player and my grades suffered.  Still, I never lost my idealistic sense of wanting to make a contribution as a social activist, organizer, and/or administrator in the future in an area where I can work to enhance social justice, particularly for young people from ethnic minority communities being processed by the criminal justice system. I want to struggle to keep young black people, especially boys, to stay out of the justice system to begin with, and once there, to do all that I can to assure that the treatment they receive is just and fair. I hope to support myself and the family that I anticipate having someday and to be a good father myself; and to serve as a good role model, especially for African-American boys who tend to look up to football players.

Since this past August, 2014, I have been working for my local government, serving as a District Coordinator for the City of XXXX Texas. While I am responsible for core business operations within my defined geographical (North Gate) district, most of my efforts and energy are devoted to ensuring traffic safety on a day-by-day basis, which gives me the opportunity to interact with many members of my community, which I very much enjoy. I thought about pursuing an MPA Degree rather than a Master’s in Criminology but I have made my final decision that XXXU’s Online Program in Criminology is the right choice for graduate school. I remain an idealist who wants to become an advocate for social justice on some level at some point in my career, and I see advanced study in criminology as the best choice to prepare myself for my maximum, long term contribution to my society, particularly the African-American community.

Each year more young black men enter our criminal justice system than enroll in our institutions of higher education system. I want to prepare myself to work to change this. I am very happy in my job serving my community since I love working in security, laboring each day to prevent traffic accidents. I will be able to continue with my present employment at the same time that I continue my education at SHSU, thus pursing my long-term dreams at night and on weekends while I continue to serve my community full time.

I thank you for considering my application to your distinguished program at XXXU.

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