Hank Aaron’s Legend Extends Beyond Baseball

January 29, 2020
Hawa Brema with her scholarship donors, Billye and Hank Aaron

In the fall of 2019, UWM junior Hawa Brema got the opportunity to meet her scholarship supporters, homerun legend Hank Aaron and his wife, Billye. Hawa was one of 63 scholarship recipients from across the country invited to attend a barbecue at the Aarons’ home and take in an Atlanta Braves game with the couple. The Aarons and the board of directors of the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation host this annual event to celebrate the Hank Aaron Scholars.

“I was excited to meet him,” Hawa said. “Just getting the chance to meet the person responsible for me furthering my career was unbelievable. I enjoyed every minute of it, and it inspired me to finish my education and give back to my community whenever I get the chance.”

A human resources management major, Hawa receives the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation 4 for 4 Scholarship in Honor of Joseph L. Kennedy. This renewable scholarship is awarded to an undergraduate who resides in the greater Milwaukee metropolitan area, has financial need and maintains a GPA of 2.75 or above. Hawa is the second student at UWM to receive the scholarship.

The scholarship was established at UWM in 2012 after the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation set up a fund at the Greater Milwaukee Foundation for the purpose of supporting Milwaukee students. The scholarship honors Joseph L. Kennedy ’70, a childhood friend of Hank Aaron’s from Mobile, Alabama. After receiving his master’s in curriculum and instruction from UWM, Kennedy worked as a teacher and administrator in the Milwaukee Public Schools for more than 30 years. He also served as advisor to the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Fund at the Greater Milwaukee Foundation and as a member of the board of directors of the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation. Kennedy died in 2014.

Since its inception in 2010, the Hank Aaron Chasing the Dream Foundation 4 for 4 Scholarship program has provided partial tuition for more than 110 students at 18 colleges and universities.

“We established the Chasing the Dream Foundation to give children with limited opportunities a chance to pursue their dreams,” Mrs. Aaron said. “We recognize that many kids have dreams that their parents cannot always fund. We want to provide that little extra that can go a long way toward making the difference in that child’s life.”

If you would like to contribute to scholarships at UWM, make your gift today. Thank you!