ato-boldon_web.jpgLIBERTY CITY — A 17-year-old organization dedicated to helping student-athletes make the transition to college will again host its annual South Florida Student Athlete Academic-Human Development Symposium.

The Tournament of Champions (TOC) will hold the event on Sunday starting at 1 p.m. at the Miami Central High School auditorium in Liberty City for student-athletes taking part in the Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Basketball Classic and the South Florida All-star Football Game featuring teams from Miami-Dade and Broward counties.

Four-time Olympian Ato Boldon of Trinidad and Tobago will be a guest presenter at the event where 100 of the best senior football players who will participate in the Nike South Florida All-Star Football Game will be joined by 200 of the best basketball players in the area.

Boldon will speak and give pointers on “media interview skills.”

“I am excited about this year’s symposium,” said Wesley Frater, owner/CEO of TOC Inc. “The facilitator’s are committed to providing the valuable tools that these athletes will need as they further their careers. We appreciate the generosity of sponsors and community partners for making this event possible.”

South Florida has more NFL players than any other region in the United States and the Miami area has more than any other. Ninety-five percent of all NFL players born in South Florida have competed in TOC’s South Florida All-Star Football Game, a TOC statement said.

Frater’s organization teaches players to cope with stress and how to use resources available to them.  The Transition Symposium is the longest running and most extensive support system in Florida scholastic sports.

It provides students with first-hand knowledge of what to expect as a collegiate athlete and how to balance the pressures and demands they will face.

Facilitators use presentations, role-playing, skits and interactive workshops, as well as group breakout sessions.

Besides Boldon, this year’s facilitators will include Wali Jones, formerly of the Philadelphia 76ERS, as host; Dr. Danette Arthur, who will address addiction; Detective James Mesidor, who will speak on domestic violence; Terrance Cribbs-Lorrant, who will deal with AIDS and sexual health; Dennard Mitchell-Brand, on image; and Zo Madison.

The TOC’s 17th annual Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Holiday Basketball Classic will be held on Jan. 7, 2011, and the 16th annual South Florida All-Star Football Game will be on Jan. 14, 2011.

For more information, call 954-618-3633.

Photo: Ato Boldon