LeBron James graces Wheaties box with students from I Promise School

·3-min read

LeBron James will grace his first Wheaties box this month and is joined by a cast of special people: those from his I Promise School.

James, whose Los Angeles Lakers are one win away from a NBA championship, is the next Wheaties Athlete and is featured with his arm back preparing for a dunk. There are also photos of the staff and children who attend the I Promise School, which he founded two years ago.

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James, I Promise students featured on Wheaties cereal

The school in his hometown of Akron, Ohio is for academically at-risk students from the inner city. They’re mentored toward a high school diploma and free college education via a strong foundation both inside and outside of the classroom.

“Growing up where we come from, to see my I Promise kids and families from Akron, Ohio, represented on the iconic Wheaties box means everything,” James said in a statement, via the Akron Beacon Journal. “The movement we’ve started in Akron is about doing our part to uplift our community by first listening and then responding with the resources they need. We will continue to do everything we can to create a better future for our kids and our community, and it starts with the students, teachers, and everyday champions you see on this box.”

The back of the box highlights James’ career as well as the details behind the school and its mission. The students were able to attend the NBA season at Disney World as virtual fans in August.

Wheaties breaks from tradition to honor I Promise

LeBron James in a sweatshirt at a podium.
LeBron James is featured on the Wheaties box alongside students and staff from the I Promise School he founded. (Michael Chritton/Akron Beacon Journal/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)

James will replace Serena Williams on the limited edition box, which is available online and will be in stores within weeks. Putting extra people on the box in the background is a break from tradition for the “Breakfast of Champions,” which has highlighted athletes since 1934.

“We all know LeBron James for his record-breaking basketball career, but his achievements off the court truly set him apart,” said Taylor Gessell, brand experience manager for Wheaties, in a statement to the Akron Beacon Journal. “From starting the LeBron James Family Foundation, to boldly speaking out on racial injustice, to launching the I Promise School — LeBron is a champion of change who is using his sports platform to better the world. We couldn’t be prouder to feature such a positive force of inspiration for the next generation of champions on Wheaties’ historic box.”

The school is hosting educators from around the United States this week to show them more about the program with the hopes other schools follow some of their initiatives, per the Beacon Journal. James’ mother, Gloria, told those at the conference on Wednesday that many times she fed James cereal for dinner because it was all she could afford.

James, she said, would marvel at the athletes on the box. Now the children he’s helping gain a quality education can marvel at themselves on that box as well.

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