Eastern Michigan University alum and former all-star basketball prospect Marvin Skipper to host charity comedy show to provide scholarships and resources for Detroit youth

A backpack drive event for underprivileged youth in Detroit.
The comedy show aims to raise funds for Youth Are Bigger Than Life's scholarship fund and community events include like the back-to-school drive shown here.

YPSILANTI — Marvin Skipper, Eastern Michigan University alumnus and former all-star basketball prospect, has turned a challenging heart condition into a mission to serve underprivileged youth in Detroit through his non-profit organization, Youth Are Bigger Than Life. He is set to host his inaugural Youth Are Bigger Than Life Charity Comedy Show to support Detroit youth on Saturday, May 25 at 7:30 p.m. at the Flagstar Strand Theatre, 12 N. Saginaw St, in Pontiac. 

Marvin Skipper

Skipper started Youth Are Bigger Than Life, a nonprofit organization that empowers underprivileged youth through education and mentorship. Their purpose is to decrease dropout rates within the Detroit Public Schools system and equip young individuals with essential social, economic, and professional skills.

"As the president of Youth Are Bigger Than Life and a former all-star basketball player, I believe every young person possesses the potential to achieve greatness," said Skipper. "Through our organization's mission and events like the Youth Are Bigger Than Life Comedy Show, we're not just raising funds; we're igniting hope and resilience."

Standing at six-foot-seven, Skipper was a top collegiate basketball prospect with dreams of an NBA career. Unfortunately, his aspirations were derailed by a heart condition before he could play at the collegiate level. This led to the need for a defibrillator, effectively ending his basketball dreams. Now he’s on a path to impacting the lives of several families throughout his neighborhood.

Skipper attributes much of his success to his time at Eastern, where he gained discipline, teamwork, and leadership skills that he now applies to supporting and uplifting Detroit's youth. Despite facing numerous challenges growing up in a single-parent household on Detroit's east side, Skipper's determination led to creating his non-profit.

"The Youth Are Bigger Than Life Comedy Show promises to be a night filled with laughter, inspiration, and support for a worthy cause," Skipper said. "Together, we can make a difference in the lives of our youth. Let's show them that they are capable of achieving greatness."

Skipper earned a bachelor of science degree in communications from EMU in 2011.

The event aims to attract 300-500 attendees and obtain funding for the organization's scholarship fund and community events, including back-to-school drives and grocery giveaways. Tickets for the event range from $30 to $60 and can be purchased on the Flagstar Strand website. For more information about Youth Are Bigger Than Life and its mission, visit the organization's website.

About Youth Are Bigger Than Life

Youth Are Bigger Than Life is a nonprofit organization dedicated to empowering underprivileged youth in the heart of Detroit through education and mentorship. Our mission is twofold: to decrease dropout rates within the Detroit Public Schools System and to equip young individuals with essential social, economic, and professional skills. By providing a strong foundation through discipline, positive coping mechanisms, and engaging after-school programs, we aim to minimize destructive behaviors and deter gang involvement. Founded by Marvin Skipper, a former all-star basketball player at Eastern Michigan University, our organization is committed to fostering a brighter future for Detroit's youth. For more information, visit the website.

About Eastern Michigan University

Founded in 1849, Eastern is the second oldest public university in Michigan. It currently serves more than 14,000 students pursuing undergraduate, graduate, specialist, doctoral and certificate degrees in the arts, sciences and professions. In all, more than 300 majors, minors and concentrations are delivered through the University's Colleges of Arts and Sciences; Business; Education; Engineering and Technology; Health and Human Services; and its graduate school. National publications regularly recognize EMU for its excellence, diversity, and commitment to applied education. Visit the University’s rankings and points of pride websites to learn more. For more information about Eastern Michigan University, visit the University's website. To stay up to date on University news, activities and announcements, visit EMU Today.

May 21, 2024

Written by:
Brittany Mobley

Media Contact:
Brittany Mobley