One of the causes we have always supported, and always will, is education. A few years ago, we were introduced to Michael Perry, a passionate and driven young man from Detroit who even at a young age embodied our core values. Our foundation was able to help sponsor Michael’s education at De La Salle Collegiate, where is currently a junior with his sights set on his post-graduation future. We recently sat down with him, and are excited to be able to share his story:
Q: Can you tell us a little bit about your childhood?
A: Sure. I was born and raised in Detroit. I grew up on the East Side with my mom. My dad lived on the West Side, and I moved back and forth between the two. Early on, I found a love for sports.
Q: Which sports?
A: I’ve been boxing since I was 7 years old at DBG (Downtown Boxing Gym) on the East Side and started playing football a few years after. Sports are a great way to stay grounded and focused. I like to challenge myself, both mind and body, which is why I’ve even taken Japanese lessons.
Q: Is that huge ring you’re rocking from one of your sports?
A: Football! We [De La Salle Pilots] won the state championship at Ford Field last November, going undefeated for the season.
Q: What was it like when you first started at De La Salle?
A: There was a little bit of culture shock, going from public school to private, but nothing out of the ordinary. It went away quickly. Everyone here at De La Salle was friendly and helpful, and I think that contributed to the ease of the transition. I’m very happy here. I’m grateful to the Sam and Nada Simon Foundation for presenting me with the opportunity to get a great high school education and for taking an interest in helping me succeed after graduation.
Q: Do you have any plans post-graduation?
A: I’m planning on college, either an HBCU in Atlanta or a school somewhere in Florida. I want to study business. My mom owns her own, and I’d love to be able to help expand it and make it even more successful, as a way to give back.
Q: What drives you day-to-day?
A: Definitely my family. Seeing all the hard work and sacrifices my parents have made for me my whole life motivates me to be successful. I want to make my family proud and give back wherever possible.