Atlanta Hawks Star Elton Brand Former All-Star Steve Smith to Award ‘Rising Star’ Students and Nonprofits $110,000 in Grants

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    Recently acquired Hawks power forward Elton Brand and retired all-star shooting guard Steve Smith will join executives from Sun Life Financial to present two high school seniors with $5,000 college scholarships and present two deserving Atlanta nonprofits with $50,000 grants.

    The presentation will take place during an exclusive Sun Life sponsored professional basketball clinic hosted for Atlanta youth on Thursday.

    Sun Life will recognize the Rising Stars high school students for their remarkable achievements and reward their efforts by surprising the students with the scholarships and the presence of Brand and Smith at a local athletic club.

    Sun Life awards the scholarships through its Rising Star Awards program, which will provide a total of $110,000 in grants and scholarships to Atlanta students and nonprofit organizations this year, according to a release from the company. By the end of 2013, the company says it will have invested nearly $4 million to 70 students and 63 nonprofit organizations in 14 U.S. cities, since 2010.

    In addition to the scholarships the Rising Stars will get the opportunity to participate in one-on-one basketball drills and games with the Hawks stars. Thirty-five other students from participating nonprofit organizations will also get the chance to take part in the Hawks’ basketball clinic Thursday evening.

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