November 22, 2019

On November 13th, a group of past Aquademics champions gathered together to celebrate the establishment of the Aquademics Scholarship at AAACF to celebrate the lasting legacy of the program and to encourage the continued pursuit of academic excellence by local youth of color. Those gathered included founder Jeanine DeLay and former board president Richard King, who shared memories and excitement that the scholarship program established by Linda Sprankle will carry on through the AAACF Community Scholarship Program.

With the mission of “Swimmers Make Better Learners,” Aquademics formed in 1990 with the dual mission of increasing African American children’s participation in competitive water sports, including through a competitive swimming team, as well as encouraging academic excellence. The nonprofit group, which received a critical seed grant from AAACF, achieved measurable success in both counts, with alumni of the program today represented in both collegiate and professional water sports as well as by the number of professionals holding advanced degrees. Aquademics encouraged athletic excellence and the greater goal of scholastic achievement through an annual camp, academic support and counseling programs, as well as a college scholarship program.

Please visit the scholarship webpage in the coming months for more history of Aquademics and mementos from this pioneering program, a true community success story!

Past Aquademics champions (Back row L-R): John Lawrence, Vicki Hames-Frazier, Julie Jenkins, Tess Karwoski, Neel Hajra. (Front row L-R): Richard King, Jeanine DeLay.