"help be that energy that takes this world into a better place."
Houston Texas star defensive end JJ Watt received an honorary doctorate degree from the Baylor College of Medicine in Houston on Tuesday night, commemorating the $37 million he helped raise for residents and businesses in Houston after Hurricane Harvey. According to CNN, Watt was chosen along with Houston Emergency Medical Services Director Dr. David Persse.
Watt, 29, was awarded his degree during a commencement ceremony, where he addressed the School of Medicine graduates and challenged them to help be that energy that takes this world into a better place. "Help be that positive light, help be that person that everyone wants to be around, and help be that energy that takes this world into a better place," Watt said. "Because if we all do a little bit, we all do our part, we can truly change the world one person at a time."
"In the year following the devastation of Hurricane Harvey and the community’s incredible response, it was most fitting to honor two community leaders who contributed in major ways, Dr. Persse and J.J. Watt," Dr. Paul Klotman, president, CEO and executive dean of Baylor, said. "Our graduates and their families can take important lessons from all four of these honorary degree recipients."
After Hurricane Harvey, Watt took to social media with a goal of raising $200,000. Less than three weeks later the total had risen to more than $37 million, and he later earned the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, which honors players for both off-field charity work and on-field excellence.