Madonna University and Legacy Center Sports Complex Announce Partnership

LEAD Academy logo

LIVONIA, Mich. – The LEAD Prep Academy (LPA), a 13th-year, post-high school, college prep academy, for students who want to play football, will open in the Fall of 2023. The LPA partnership will offer top-notch academic programs through Madonna University, and first-class athletic training in state-of-the-art facilities at the Legacy Center Sports Complex. The LEAD Prep Academy is a subsidiary of the LEAD Foundation, a nonprofit 501c3 based in Michigan. This collaborative partnership will be the first of its kind in Michigan and the Midwest. The unique program is geared toward international and domestic high-school graduates who are seeking social, academic, and athletic development during a gap year between high school and college.

“We are extremely excited to open the Academy to student athletes from around the world,” said Justin Cessante, LPA founder and athletic director. “We are honored to combine the best of such a respected University as Madonna with the outstanding Legacy organization and athletic facilities. “Our goal is to provide a unique platform and environment that promotes the development of the whole student; in the classroom and in athletic competition, while helping each student-athlete to achieve their academic and athletic goals,” said Cessante.

Madonna University’s administrators are eager for LPA to start recruiting students for the program next year, “This is a wonderful opportunity for students to further their intellectual development by taking classes at Madonna, while also playing football at the Legacy Center Sports Complex,” said Lewis Walker, Ph.D., Madonna’s interim provost and interim vice president for academic administration.

Once the football program gets established the partners anticipate expanding the LEAD Prep Academy to other sports and more students.

The LEAD Prep Academy is a subsidiary of the LEAD Foundation, a Michigan-based nonprofit organization.

Lead Academy Graphic featuring split aerial view of Madonna University campus and Legacy Sports Complex

About Madonna

Liberal arts education, career preparation and service-learning have been the hallmarks of a Madonna University education for 85 years. In addition to the beautiful main campus, conveniently located at I-96 and Levan Road in Livonia, Madonna offers academic programs in Dearborn, Gaylord, Macomb, and Southfield, and online in Haiti and the United Arab Emirates. Michigan’s most affordable, independent, Catholic, liberal arts university, Madonna offers more than 100 undergraduate and 35 graduate programs in the Colleges of Arts and Sciences, Education and Human Development, and Nursing and Health, as well as the School of Business.

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