BIRMINGHAM, Ala. — In a continuing effort to recognize the accomplishments of student-athletes beyond the court of competition, the SEC once again highlighted a Community Service Team for men’s basketball for the 2018-19 season.
For the second year in a row, Tennessee’s representative on this year’s SEC Community Service Team is Grant Williams.
Off the court, Williams’ presence is always felt. Since his freshman year, Williams has served as one of the men’s basketball program’s representatives on Tennessee’s Student-Athlete Advisory Council (SAAC), helping to coordinate and conduct several events throughout the year, most of which are service and community-outreach based.
This year, Williams shouldered additional responsibilities by serving on the SEC’s Student Leadership Council. Through his role in the VOLeaders Academy, he was also heavily involved in the planning and implementation for the UT Sports Fest, an adaptive sport festival for children with disabilities.
Another tradition that the Charlotte, N.C., native has been a part of is Tennessee’s longstanding partnership with Hoops for Hope, which takes place just before school starts back up in August. The program benefits the Down Syndrome Awareness Group of East Tennessee. His role in the event was assisting with basketball drill stations and coordinating full-court games during which efforts are made to ensure that every participant has the opportunity to make a basket.
The junior forward was involved in community service outings at Tennessee’s Voloween, Thrive Lonsdale, community golf tournaments and several other volunteering opportunities. In total, he accumulated 20 hours of community service this year through these organizations.
While Williams has a passion for community service, there is one venture that he holds nearest to his heart. Once a month, depending on the time of year, he will visit a child in the hospital. As his rise to prominence in college hoops has escalated, the reigning SEC Player of the Year has rapidly become a fan-favorite around the Knoxville community. Whether it has been through the athletic department or a person reaching out to him on social media, Grant has answered the call to visit some of his biggest fans during their toughest times.
While spending a moment with the kids and their families, Williams has one goal: offering joy and a peace of mind for a short period of time in an otherwise tough and stressful situation.
Williams and the Vols will be back in action on Friday night, as they compete in the quarterfinals of the SEC Tournament.