In yet another example of how he's transcended basketball, former Laker Kareem Abdul-Jabbar will serve as California's After School STEM ambassador.
The STEM acronym stands for science, technology, engineering and math, subjects state Supt. Tom Torlakson believes will help improve California's education system. As an ambassador, Abdul-Jabbar plans to speak publicly on the importance of education. Through 2013, Abdul-Jabbar will travel to cities that host after-school STEM events.
During his tour, Abdul-Jabbar will unveil more than 300 pieces of memorabilia that reflect his 19-year NBA career, in which he finished as the league's all-top leading scorer and won five of his six championships with the Lakers. Proceeds from tickets to an unveiling event will benefit Abdul-Jabbar's Skyhook Foundation and STEM Education.
“If America is to maintain our high standard of living, we must continue to innovate,” Abdul-Jabbar said in a statement. “We are competing with nations many times our size, and STEM learning represents the engines of innovation. With these engines we can lead the world, because knowledge is real power.”