Luxco® Supports Lift for Life Academy’s New Gym Project – School Friends Come Together for a Greater Purpose

Since 2000, Lift for Life Academy has been a learning community where all students are empowered to maximize their full potential. Co-founder and Executive Director Marshall Cohen started this free charter school to offer students living in St. Louis City an alternative to traditional public schools. The school now has more than 580 students in grades 6 through 12. This year, more than 75 students graduated from the school – which is located in Soulard in what was originally the Manufacturers Bank and Trust Building. The school uses a creative approach to learning by offering classes such as fashion design, Mandarin Chinese, and public speaking. They pride themselves in the ability to reach and motivate students through compassionate leadership embedded in innovative programming.

“All of our students live in the city, and most of them come from impoverished backgrounds, but they are very motivated to attend school as evidenced by our 92 percent daily attendance rate,” says Marshall. “We run a fleet of buses to pick up students daily from their homes, making it easier for parents and more convenient for students to attend school.”

The buses are also used to drive the students throughout the day to their PE classes, which are held in rented facilities around the area, wasting a lot of time and resources. “Our school really needs a gym and fitness center on our campus so students can use it for PE classes and sports events,” says Marshall.

This summer, construction should begin on the new gym and fitness center adjacent to the school, partly in thanks to Luxco’s support. Students will be able to enjoy a volleyball and basketball court, bleacher space for 400 spectators, and a fitness area with cardio machines and weights. Students and their parents will be able to enjoy “home turf” sports games once the new gym is built – which they have never been able to experience before.

Both Marshall and Donn Lux know high school sports are important for students. “Donn and I went to grade school and high school together,” says Marshall. “I knew he was an athlete and a big sports fan. He always had his hockey equipment with him on the bus. He is also extremely passionate about improving the City of St. Louis, and we are thankful for Luxco’s generosity as we enter this exciting construction project. We cannot wait for our students’ first day in the new gym!”