SPAAT, Oakland Athletic League and OUSD Announce Winners of Annual Oakland ESPY Awards, Including Middle School Student-Athletes of the Year, the All-Academic Team and High School Student-Athletes of the Year
Oakland, CA – In a ceremony Wednesday evening in which young people collectively received more than $20,000 in scholarships, SPAAT, the Student Program for Academic and Athletic Transitioning, the Oakland Athletic League (OAL) and OUSD honored 14 remarkable student-athletes from across the District for their accomplishments on the fields of play and in the classroom. It was the Annual Oakland ESPY (Excellence in Sports Performance Yearly) Awards Ceremony broadcast simultaneously on Zoom and Facebook.
The ESPY Awards went to two Middle School Student-Athletes of the Year, two High School Student-Athletes of the Year and ten members of the OUSD All-Academic Team. A full list of the awardees is below. Each of them received a scholarship of $1000, except for the High School Student-Athletes of the Year, who received $5000 each.
The celebration, which normally takes place in person with hundreds of people cheering on the athletes, was sponsored by the Wells Fargo Foundation, Blue Shield of California’s Black Employee Network, Skyline High School alumnus Kevin Winston from the Atlanta Falcons front office, and NBA Hall of Famer, and Skyline High School alumnus, Gary Payton. “We want them to understand that we want them to succeed. And so we have to give them value, we have to give them support, and they have to have somebody that they know that they can come back to, to say, ‘Look, they’re supporting us, and we need to work hard,’” said Payton of the honorees and SPAAT.
SPAAT Founder and Executive Director, Harold Pearson, said this was the seventh straight ESPY Awards Celebration. “This is what happens when the community comes together to support kids. And what we have the opportunity to have going forward, even with the crisis that we’re in right now… It’s a testament to the community in Oakland that continues to be innovative and a model for communities across the country,” said Pearson.
If you want to watch the 2020 Oakland ESPY Awards Ceremony, you can visit the SPAAT Facebook page, @SPAATup.
Here are your 2020 Oakland ESPY Award Winners.
2020 Middle School Athletes of the Year
\2020 OUSD/OAL/SPAAT All Academic Team
Photos unavailable for All Academic Team Members:
● Cecile Noguera, 4.17, Oakland Tech, Soccer
● Jackson Weldon, 4.26, Oakland Tech, Football
2020 High School Athletes of the Year
This Student-Athlete of the Year increased his GPA from a 2.33 as a freshman to 3.5 as a senior. He played football and ran track for McClymonds High. He was the #39 cornerback prospect nationally and #50 overall recruit in California’s 2020 class. He was named Oakland Athletic League MVP and led McClymonds to a perfect 11-0 regular season record during his senior year and to the CIF Division 2-A state championship game. Plus, he was on two state champion McClymonds High teams in 2017 and 2018. He will be attending Arizona State University in the fall. His name is Edward Woods.
This Student-Athlete of the Year co-founded Oakland Students for Public Education, was a National Merit semifinalist, National AP Scholar, 2019 Oakland Youth Vice Poet Laureate, and 2020 CIF Scholar Athlete of the Year. She ran cross country and track at Skyline High, and won the 2019 cross country section championship and holds the Oakland Section records in the 3-mile and the 1,500, 1,600 and 3,000 meters. She graduated Skyline as Valedictorian with a 4.83 GPA and will attend Harvard University in the fall. Her name is Eleanor Wikstrom.
SPAAT, OAL and OUSD congratulate all these outstanding scholar-athletes and wish them the best in their future endeavors.
About the Oakland Unified School District
In California’s most diverse city, Oakland Unified School District (OUSD) is dedicated to creating a learning environment where “Every Student Thrives!” More than half of our students speak a non-English language at home. And each of our 82 schools is staffed with talented individuals uniting around a common set of values: Students First, Equity, Excellence, Integrity, Cultural Responsiveness and Joy. We are committed to preparing all students for college, career and community success.
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