Adom Appiah

Spartanburg Day School
Spartanburg, SC

Turning Passion into Progress

The power of sports can change the game for everyone.

When Adom Appiah’s 7th grade history teacher assigned his class a service project, she couldn’t have imagined just how far Adom would take it. Given his love of sports, Adom’s brainchild was a celebrity basketball game, which he called Ball4Good. The event drew 800 spectators, and the proceeds benefited the local Boys and Girls Club. Based on the project’s success, Adom started a nonprofit to sustain Ball4Good with the help of a grant from the Spartanburg County Foundation. He has since raised more than $100,000 to support 28 different youth-oriented organizations in his community and has attracted the likes of Zion Williamson of the NBA’s New Orleans Pelicans, former NFL player Landon Cohen, retired WNBA all-star Andrea Stinson, and former Michigan State University basketball player Anthony Ianni to star in his games. “The greatest reward, however, has been the smiles I’ve been fortunate enough to reveal in my community and beyond,” says Adom.

Based on his experience with Ball4Good, Adam has written three books on the theme of motivating kids to change the world—something he has proven is entirely possible with hard work and a willingness to channel your passions for the greater good. Of course, the right support system is critical, too. Adom shares his successes with his parents, mentors, teachers, coaches, friends, and advisors who helped him along with way. “I have been able to walk through doors that may not have opened for me if my idea had not been accepted or validated. I hope others can learn from my experience and offer mentorship to youth.”

Through Ball4Good, Adam has already achieved more than many philanthropists accomplish in a lifetime. Still, he finds time to give even more to his community. He is the youngest serving board member of the Boys and Girls Club of the Upstate and volunteers and participates in as many as nine other school and community clubs and organizations. All of this accomplished while still excelling at his studies and consistently improving his speed on the track and his personal records in soccer and basketball. Adom has learned to use every minute to his advantage, often foregoing phone and social media time to study. As a semifinalist in the Scripps National Spelling Bee, he used his time on the bus to soccer games to read his dictionary. “The sacrifice paid off when I placed 41st out of 11 million.” For Adom, it’s all about discipline, perseverance, and passion for the sports and community he loves that drive him to be the best version of himself. “As I learned from my spelling days, I do not compete against others. Rather, I am my own competition.”


Athletic

Achievements

Basketball

    • Coaches Award

Soccer

      • Most Improved Player

 


Academic Honors & Awards

  • 2021 Scholar College Board National African American Recognition Program
  • Wofford Scholar Nominee
  • Morehead-Cain Scholar Nominee
  • South Carolina Palmetto Fellows Scholarship Nominee
  • University of Virginia Jefferson Book Award
  • AP Scholar Honor Roll
  • 2018 South Carolina Junior Scholar
  • 2018 Math Counts First Place Team
  • 2X Scripps National Spelling Bee Semifinalist
  • Billie Jean King Youth Leadership Award
  • 2019 Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes
  • 2020 William R. Simms Award for Outstanding Youth in Philanthropy
  • Daily Point of Light Award Honoree

 

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School & Community Involvement

  • Student Body President
  • Ball4Good Founder
  • Boys and Girls Club of the Upstate Board Member
  • Honor Council Member
  • YMCA Youth in Government
  • Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Steering Committee
  • Model Arab League
  • Interact Club Member
  • Children’s Cancer Partners of the Carolinas Volunteer
  • Brothers Restoring Urban Hope Member
  • Jazz Band Member

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“Representation matters. We become what we see. Through my actions, I hope to influence the next generation.”

~ Adom Appiah ~