On Friday, NBA superstar Chris Paul received his bachelor’s degree in communications from Winston-Salem State University. In addition to reaching the significant milestone, the Phoenix Suns point guard performed a generous act by gifting each of his fellow graduates $2,500, according to Sports Illustrated.
The 37-year-old NBA veteran traveled to North Carolina following the Phoenix Suns’ 111-95 victory over the Los Angeles Clippers to attend the ceremony. Paul was accepted to the historically Black college in 2020. Paul attended Wake Forest before being drafted into the NBA in 2005. However, after making the big move, he put his college education on hold.
In an interview after his team’s victory over the Clippers, Paul shared his excitement about finally earning a college degree. “Man it’s cool, I’m excited, Long time coming,” Paul said. “To be able to go back home and do that with my family is something that snuck up kinda quick but I’m probably most excited that I get to spend the next 10 days with my wife and my kids.”
"Man it's cool. I'm excited. Long time coming."
— Duane Rankin (@DuaneRankin) December 16, 2022
Throughout his NBA career, Paul has made significant contributions to HBCUs. In addition to establishing an internship pipeline at North Carolina A&T, Paul produced a docuseries that focuses on the challenges confronting HBCU athletic programs, according to Sports Illustrated. He also appeared in two HBCU basketball showcases.
“I speak about it every now and then when I get a chance, but I think HBCUs are so important for trying to make sure that we level the playing field,” Paul said in November, according to the Arizona Republic. “Make sure that they’re provided with the same opportunities that a lot of these other schools are blessed with, and the guys are just as talented, if not more talented, they just need the platform. They need people to see them, to believe in them.”