Welcome to the first blog entry of Crossover Basketball and Scholars Academy. This has been an idea in my mind for the past two and a half years in trying to find a way to incorporate my love of teaching and basketball and combine that with wanting to continue to learn more about my parents history and culture. Having been born and raised in Calgary, Alberta, Canada (on the Rockies in Canada) before moving to the US in the middle of high school by parents from India, the emphasis on education is unparalleled in any other culture. This extreme emphasis by the first wave of immigrants usually prevented most children of Indian backgrounds from participating in any major group/team events as it is seen as distraction away from the overall goal of individual academic accomplishments. But as the world continues to move further towards a globalization of all cultures, the ever changing India will need to begin developing leaders and citizens who will be able to use this harness this methodology of teamwork and camaraderie to lead the future.
This venture into applying the basic theory of sport in America and Canada to a foreign country seems so simple and yet is so far removed from what other organizations offer. The concept of providing opportunities for those in India has been modeled in my family for years. My father and mother have forever been committed to helping those still in India and made sure to remind my brother and I about how blessed we were to be in Canada and the US. The resiliency of my parents in sacrificing and committing themselves to ensure a future full of opportunities and possibilities for us resonated beyond just the classroom and playing fields but into the fiber of our beings. For that I am forever grateful to them and this project would not even have been started without their love and guidance.
Many days were spent in my science department office the last three years considering and debating the best practices for creating a model towards an all-encompassing learning experience with my good friend, the late Cliff Goodband. Cliff had been the Head of the Upper School for nearly 20 years prior to my arrival and quite literally took me under his wing to follow and expand our similar ideology of education and continue to develop my teaching style all while battling cancer for nearly two years – and a refusal to not be forced into not teaching. That strength and determination, almost identical to that of my father in building a life in Canada and the US while only starting with $6 in his pocket upon landing, are traits and skills of men who are committed to doing things the right way, to teaching the right way and to making others better around them with very little fanfare.
So why can’t sport be a combination of ideas that goes beyond attempting to create a superstar for marketing purposes but rather a classroom for leadership, teamwork, character, principle, discipline, improvement through effort and time and all those pieces of society that we are in the midst of missing with the corruption that occurs in business and government. Why can’t the principles of John Wooden continue to be preached and taught to an even wider audience rather than just in books? Why can’t young men and women be taught the “right way” to do things rather than society just assuming that some people just don’t understand? Why can’t we use sport, like it has so often in the past, connect education and people in a way that goes beyond competition?
So here we are – making history and starting a program that combines all of my passions in a way that should help the future of many. Crossover Basketball and Scholars Academy is on the cusp of starting something that while interested in short term results is also excited about being around for many years to come. Thank you for visiting CBSA’s website, for having an interest in a more global society that values other countries not just for what they can do for us but how we can share with them.
“You can’t live a perfect day without doing something for someone who will never be able to repay you.” – John Wooden
Let’s try and have a few perfect days.