Young African Amerian Tennis Players Compete while Earning Scholarships and Self-esteem

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African American students in the Freeman Junior Development Program will be competing in the Southwest Tennis Association Championships March 19-21. The program has enabled students to win college tennis scholarships at universities across the country.

The Freeman Junior Development Program hosts the Southwest Tennis Association Sectional Championships in Dallas March 19, 2010-March 21, 2010. The tournament will be held at the Kiest Tennis Center which is located at 2324 W. Kiest Boulevard. The 3 day SWTA championship includes junior and senior singles and doubles events. Students who take part in the tournament will also compete for a $500 scholarship that will be based on highest points accumulated.

There will also be a Kids Clinic on Saturday March 20, 2010 at 11:30 a.m. Roz King of San Diego and Dr. Franklin Scott of Philadelphia will be guest instructors of the clinic. The Freeman Junior Development Program has a legacy of developing young African American tennis players. “Outstanding results of the program are found in the achievements of young players,” said Marcus Freeman founder of the Freeman Junior Development Program. “Our juniors have been ranked in the top five of junior competition in the Texas section of the USTA, set records for winning the private school state title for four years, and received admission to West Point, Notre Dame University, Chicago State University, Texas Southern University, North Texas State University, Grambling University, and Prairie View A&M University.”

The “Breaking the Barriers” exhibit will be in town as part of the weekend tournament activities. The photography exhibit documents the participation of African Americans in competitive tennis despite a segregated system that kept them from competing against white players. That is why African American players formed the American Tennis Association in 1916. The exhibit will be on display at the Hampton-Illinois Branch Library March 12-21which is located at 2951 S. Hampton in Dallas, within walking distance of the Kiest Tennis Center.

For more information call 214-339-7370, 214-662-2352

About the Freeman Junior Development Program: Founded by tennis teaching professional, Marcus A. Freeman Jr., the main purpose of the FJDP is to provide a firm basis for developing junior inner city tennis players regardless of race, creed, color or religion. Freeman uses the discipline of learning tennis as a way to increase the self-esteem of youth. Freeman started the Southwest Tennis Association which is part of the American Tennis Association (ATA). The ATA based out of Largo, MD was founded in 1916 and is the oldest African-American sports organization in the United States. The core mission is to develop junior African-American tennis players. Althea Gibson, Arthur Ashe Jr., and Zina Garrison were among world class players developed by the ATA.


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