Avery Williamson made a promise to himself. After five years of his NFL career, he would return to the University of Kentucky to finish his final semester of classes and graduate.

Taking advantage of the Post-Eligibility Program that has offered lifetime scholarships to UK student-athletes since 1989, Williamson did exactly that. The New York Jet and former All-SEC linebacker completed his coursework and walked across the stage at spring commencement, receiving his undergraduate degree in integrated strategic communications.

Williamson still has plenty of football ahead of him, but he’s already thinking about what will come next. With a diploma in hand, he knows he will be prepared for it.