During his week of preparation for the Rams Week 3 matchup against Los Angeles Chargers, All-Pro Cornerback AQIB TALIB made some time to take a trip down to Inglewood. The trip wasn't for a glimpse at the new LA Stadium site, where the Rams will play their home games at the start of the 2020 season. Instead, the visit was for a joint leadership session with student-athletes from two local high schools with a cross-section of races and socioeconomic backgrounds.
"Alright team, we have to work together now to get this up and standing," said Talib to a table of high school student-athletes as they attempted to make a standing trophy out of straws and tape. "Don't be hesitant to speak up if you have an idea that might help us out."
In partnership with the Ross Initiative in Sports for Equality (RISE), Talib joined a few of his teammates on Tuesday, September 18, to facilitate the forming of relationships and discourse between student-athletes of Oaks Christian located in Westlake Village and Morningside High School located in Inglewood. During the session, Talib participated in discussions about the qualities of leadership, how to see from different perspectives, how to accept others for their differences, and the importance of working as a team to benefit their communities.
"It means a lot to be a part of the RISE program," said Talib. "These are two totally different backgrounds and these kids are really connecting with each other. It's nice to show them that I'm just a person who came from where they come from and that anything is possible. I think it means a lot to them too."
Donning the starred "C" patch on his uniform as a designated team captain in his first year with the Rams, Talib's leadership on the field is also representative of his character off the field.
"It was so cool because it seemed like Aqib really wanted to be here with us," said Victor, a student-athlete who attends Oaks Christian. "We could tell that he really looked forward to doing this with us and he was really fun to talk to. He'd even answer some of our questions about football and what it's like going up against certain players in the NFL. Our team really enjoyed it."
Talib intends to continue his community stewardship in the Los Angeles region while the Rams strive to impact the lives of Angelinos both on-and-off the field.
For more information about the Rams community outreach efforts, please visit therams.com/community.
Check out photos of this week's Rams Community Impact Player of the Week, Aqib Talib,