Home > malik Hearon 2016 Kevin Higgins Scholarship Recipient

Malik Hearon -
 2016 Kevin Higgins College
Scholarship Grant Recipient

San Diego, CA (December 26, 2016) - “This sport has showed me what true pain is and it has taught me that life can be hard, but you have to keep your head up because we are all on the battlefield fighting together as a team and as one,” said 2016 Kevin Higgins College Scholarship recipient, Malik Hearon. Rugby has impacted Malik’s life in ways that he cannot explain, but rather in ways he demonstrates in his everyday life. He is a promising young rugby player who prides himself on never giving up and working toward his goals.

Malik’s rugby career began in the ninth grade with the Memphis Inner City Rugby Club where he started at scrumhalf and hooker. In his first season of play, he was elected captain and exuded his passion for the game both on and off the pitch. His dedication to the game was apparent as he earned team MVP honors in just his second season of play. In his senior season, Malik earned awards for hard work and dedication and was named to the West Tennessee All-Star team.

Malik’s perseverance and work ethic are what set him apart as a player and a person. “In his junior and senior years, Malik emerged as a clear leader and captain for our team, often standing as a uniting presence for players with vastly different personalities and skill sets. He was the first to motivate his teammates after a tough loss or a difficult training session and always at the front of a fitness session or to attempt a new skill,” said Memphis Inner City Rugby Executive Director and coach, Bradley Trotter. Malik will have the opportunity to continue his rugby career at Middle Tennessee State University for the Blue Raiders this fall.

Malik graduated from The Soulsville Charter School in Memphis, Tennessee with a 3.0 GPA. In addition to four years of high school rugby, he was apart of his school’s jazz band as drummer/percussionist from freshman to junior year. As a member of the jazz band he devoted several hours of his time to rigorous rehearsals daily and partook in the Snap Music Academy. Malik was also a member of the Nobleman Society Incorporated (N.S.I.), an organization that allowed him to participate in numerous step shows and philanthropic activities around the Memphis community. As a member of N.S.I., he participated in several charity run/walks and served Thanksgiving dinners to the homeless and elderly in the North Memphis community.

In addition to many of his other extra curricular involvements, Malik was a participant in the National Summer Transportation Institution Program (N.S.T.I.) in his junior year of high school. The N.S.T.I. was a four-week residential pre-college engineering program at Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tennessee. Throughout the program, he participated in rigorous math and science courses pertaining to the engineering field and toured several transportation facilities, including the Tennessee Department of Transportation, the Metro Airport in Nashville, and a local Nissan factory.

Hearon participated in the Memphis Bar Association summer program at the city attorney’s office as a sophomore, where he had the opportunity to work alongside judges and attorneys, sit in on courtroom meetings, helped construct counterarguments with attorneys and toured the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation. Malik received honors for successfully completing the internship for the way he presented himself in a professional manner, appeared for work on time, and for his active participation.

At Middle Tennessee he intends on pursuing a degree in political science with a minor in engineering. Malik has dreamed of being an attorney since he was 12 years old and is looking forward to becoming an attorney that people can love and trust. He would also like to work in politics, where he aspires to make a difference in the world. Malik says that no matter where life takes him, he will always carry rugby in his soul.

Malik’s passion for the game is what has made him stand out in his first few months with the Middle Tennessee State University Rugby Program. Head coach Jody Hensley describes Malik as a hard worker with a solid work ethic in both practice and games. “Malik is a great young man with a bright future. The one thing about Malik that stands out the most is his efforts to improve as a rugby player. After every practice and every game, he is the first person to approach me and ask what could he have done better. I have noticed over time that he shows up early to practice to work on his skills that need improvement." Hensley added that Malik has blended well with the older players on the team due to his efforts and will to succeed, and that his hard work does not go unnoticed. 

Congratulations Malik, on being named a 2016 Kevin Higgins College Scholarship recipient.

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