How Robert Shumake and The Shumake Relays Help Pay for Years of College Experience

Apr 2, 2021 7:00 PM ET

Robert Shumake has found massive success as a business person but still sees many within the African American community suffering. Once he achieved success, he started promoting scholarships and other financial benefits via his cross-country relay organization. It focuses on historically black schools to help provide the kind of support the community needs to succeed at a higher level.

Why Robert Shumake Started His Relays

As a young African American growing up in Michigan, Robert Shumake experienced many difficulties and racial discrimination. For example, he noticed that many of his peers struggled to make sports teams, such as cross country clubs, elitist, and heavily white. This problem has become less common, Robert Shumake has noticed, but it is still a concern in some areas.

As a result, Robert Shumake started his historically black school relays, a competitive event that focuses on colleges that primarily school African American individuals. These relays are open to all cross country runners from these schools who want to succeed at a higher level. Robert Shumake tries to keep these relays to high school students and even college students trying to achieve a higher level of success within their field and their training interests.

And every year, Robert Shumake and his relays organization and events identify hundreds of well-qualified and talented African American students. Over the years, he has given out more than 25,000 scholarships to these competitors, allowing them to reach higher success levels. They can use these funds for colleges of their choice and attempt to compete in cross-country events simultaneously.

This concept’s main idea is for Robert Shumake and his team to break down racial barriers throughout the country. By introducing more African American runners to cross-country at a collegiate level, Robert Shumake hopes to help more of these runners to go professional. At the very least, he wants to integrate them into a more substantial and more enjoyable competition experience at the collegiate level.

Just as importantly, helping more African American runners to get to the collegiate level can break the cycle of social abuse that often traps many in difficult situations. Sadly, many in this community still experience heartbreaking poverty even after generations of struggle. This problem is one that Robert Shumake knows can be hard to escape. This economic cycle often makes individuals desperate, which Robert Shumake knows may lead to recurring struggles.

Thankfully, by using his scholarships to help these young individuals succeed, Robert Shumake hopes to break this cycle and help these young ones reach higher success levels. If done correctly, young runners can break the poverty cycle in one generation and set their children up for future success. In this way, a better world can be created, one cross country runner at a time.

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