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Travis Kelce Launches Health and Wellness Award for UC Student-Athletes

Zach Stipe

Zach Stipe

Associate AD / Communications

(CINCINNATI, OH – Nov. 9, 2022)Kansas City Chiefs and former Cincinnati Bearcat Travis Kelce announced that his Eighty-seven & Running Foundation will make a significant contribution to the University of Cincinnati Athletic Department by introducing a Health and Wellness Endowment for Bearcats student-athletes.

The donation will fund Cincinnati’s Sports Psychology and Counseling Department, which directly impacts and assists all 450 student-athletes at Kelce’s alma mater, expanding the staff and staff for Director of Sports Psychology Lenecia Nickell in the process.

The award ensures that all UC student-athletes will have permanent access to the care and services needed to be mentally and physically strong, confident and resilient.

“During my time at UC, I developed a solid infrastructure of people around to help me navigate day-to-day life as a student-athlete,” Kelce said. “The transition from high school to college was a difficult one; it was an emotional rollercoaster at times juggling my academic responsibilities and holding my own on the field. There was little or no room for error in the classroom and on the field .having that support system in place is part of the reason I decided to start this Endowment Fund and give back to my alma mater and its athletic department.I am at a place in my career where I can share my experiences and lend resources to provide the university’s student-athletes with the help they need to become the best versions of themselves they can be.”

Kelce played at UC from 2009 to 2012, scoring eight touchdowns in his final season before heading to the NFL where he starred for the Chiefs for the past decade, establishing himself as one of the greatest tight ends in NFL history has.

“We are honored to have Travis Kelce introduce this transformational award for our student-athletes,” said Director of Athletics John Cunningham. “This is a very special gift from Travis because it comes from a former student-athlete to current and future student-athletes, but also because it will impact student-athletes for years to come.

“Travis is a tremendous ambassador for the University of Cincinnati and we are grateful for his continued support for our athletes and our athletic department. Mental health is a critical component of college athletics. Travis’ gift will ensure Cincinnati is at the forefront of support remains for all UC athletes.”

Kelce is a dedicated philanthropist who is passionate about helping the lives of young people facing adversity. He founded Eighty-Seven & Running in 2015 in Kansas City, Missouri. The organization seeks to help underserved youth become productive citizens by creating motivational mentoring programs that help explore and develop their abilities while learning critical life skills.

“Nurturing mental and physical health is critical in developing successful futures for student-athletes,” said André Eanes, Kelce’s business manager, and a former Cincinnati Bearcat himself.
The University has built an incredible foundation to support the physical needs of student-athletes, which is just as important as supporting their mental health as both are essential to optimizing wellness and excellence with performance in the classroom, on the field, and their life outside sports.”

Over Eighty-Seven & Running
Eighty-Seven & Run then helps underserved youth become productive citizens by mentoring and motivating them to explore and develop their abilities while learning critical life skills. Founded in 2015, we have remained dedicated to providing resources and enrichment opportunities for youth and their communities through fundraising, athletic programs, mentoring and outreach initiatives. Our mission is to empower underprivileged youth to succeed by providing resources and support to their communities and cultivating their talent in the fields of education, business, athletics, STEM and the arts. We seek to change the outcomes of underserved youth in communities across the US by creating access to opportunity, enrichment and advancement.

About Cincinnati Athletics

The University of Cincinnati Department of Athletics competes at the highest level of intercollegiate athletics with the vision to achieve Next level success for all 18 varsity teams and more than 500 student-athletes. The Bearcats have a proud athletic history, winning eight national championships and 117 conference titles. The Cincinnati men’s basketball team is one of the 15 winningest programs ever, while the football team became the first American Athletic Conference program to compete in the College Football Playoff in 2021. Olympic gold medalist volleyball player Jordan Thompson, NBA Hall of Famer Oscar Robertson and Major League Baseball legend Sandy Koufax are among the several standouts who have competed as Bearcats.

UC student-athletes collectively posted a 3.369 overall GPA in the spring of 2021 with 77 percent earning spots on the Honor Roll, while six student-athletes collected CoSIDA Academic All-America honors.

Led by Director of Athletics John Cunningham, and supported by more than 150 full-time staff members, UC Athletics’ mission is to connected our community, improve our University and impact the lives of student-athletes as they prepare to change the world on and off the field.

For more information visit gobearcats.com.

 

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