Jason Kidd Earns Degree at University of Phoenix

It’s been 29 years since Jason Kidd left the University of California-Berkeley, where he worked on his English Degree from 1992-1994. He made the decision to postpone his education for an opportunity to play in the NBA. The Mavericks, who had the number two pick, drafted him in the first round.

During his career as a player, he was named Rookie of the Year, earned 10 All-Star Game spots, won two Olympic gold medals, and took home and NBA championship with the Dallas Mavericks in 2011, defeating the Miami Heat’s Superstars Lebron James, Dwane Wade, and Chris Bosh. In 2018, Kidd received the coveted honor of being inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame. Most recently, he was named Head Coach of the Dallas Mavericks.

Yet despite his athletic accomplishments, he knew he had some unfinished business. And that led him to University of Phoenix.

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Jason Kidd Revisits His Education

While Kidd left UCB without completing his degree in 1994, his subsequent NBA career shows that he made the right move for him at the time. What could have motivated a man who appeared to have it all professionally to go back to school?

When asked why he chose to go back after all these years, Kidd said, “I saw this commercial with Larry Fitzgerald a while back. It was for the University of Phoenix, and it was talking about how he promised his mom he would get his degree, and I thought that was kind of incredible, and that kind of inspired me to want to get my degree also.”

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Kidd later talked to former NFL Wide Receiver Fitzgerald and minority owner of the Phoenix Suns, expressing how Fitzgerald had inspired him to do the same thing. Kidd would finish what he started by going back to school, and University of Phoenix, with its student-centered online degree program, was the logical choice. It fits into his busy lifestyle.

Kidd Goes Back to School

Kidd went back to school after 27 years to complete his English degree online through University of Phoenix. He began attending online classes with the University while working as an assistant coach for the Los Angeles Lakers in 2019. Juggling work and family (he had four children including one two-year-old daughter at the time) was no easy feat, but the University made it manageable.

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Kidd expressed that he faced challenges along the way. For example, it was tough to attend to his studies and coursework with a young child at home. But he was able to achieve his goal and graduated with the University of Phoenix Class of 2021. He shared regarding his experience going back to school: “It’s been a while, but school was fun…I finally graduated, so I’m excited to have that diploma.”

Using Experience to Encourage Others

Kidd told the Dallas Morning News that he once dodged the question when asked if he had graduated college. Now, he is happy to no longer feel the need to change the subject. He can just answer yes.

He wants to use his experience to encourage others to follow through with their education even if it has been a while since they first started. He uses his platform as a way to influence the decisions of players, coaches and basketball staff personnel who stopped going to school for other opportunities to go back and finish what they started.

When asked where he plans to keep his degree, he says it will be right up there with his two gold medals and other NBA career awards. He considers getting his degree one of the most important accomplishments of his life.

About University of Phoenix

University of Phoenix seeks to make higher education opportunities available to more people so they can meet their professional goals. To that end, the University offers online classes and personalized guidance designed to support students’ career goals.

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Those who began college years ago and are ready to go back and finish what they started can transfer eligible credits toward a bachelor’s degree program. This can help students save time and money while moving them a step closer to finishing their degree.

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Wondering about transfer credits or going back to get your degree? Learn more about University of Phoenix degree programs.

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