Campus & Community Engagement Assistant
For my leadership experiential learning project, I worked as the Campus & Community Engagement Assistant for UW Athletics in the office of Student-Athlete Academic Services. My two major projects with my supervisor, Ink Aleaga, were Women in Sports Month and Football Education Month. In Women in Sports Month, I coordinated school visits to surrounding Seattle Public Schools for five UW Women’s athletic teams - Cross Country, Volleyball, Soccer, Softball, and Crew. For Football Education Month, not only did I coordinate school visits to surrounding Seattle Public Schools, but also helped with the planning for the whole month which consisted of a career mixer for upperclassmen, workshops for freshman, and other activities.
Throughout the process, I learned valuable skills and lessons. I consider myself to be a pretty organized person, but this position pushed me to enhance my organization skills and use all of the resources available to me. It was necessary to keep all the e-mails, schedules, and spreadsheets orderly and up to date in order to be as efficient as possible. Additionally, this position required me to take some control in planning the visits, and I gained much independence and confidence. One thing that was very helpful for me to learn and improve was debriefing with my supervisor. After Women in Sports Month, we came together and discussed what went well, what could have gone better, and what we should do for next time.
Here is a presentation I created for Ink about the Women in Sports visits:
I plan to continue with this position for my whole time at UW. Ink Aleaga and I work very well together and I had a wonderful experience as the Campus & Community Engagement Assistant. In fact, I will be assisting Ink this summer with planning youth camps for his non-profit organization, Taro Roots.
The work that I did this year in this internship relates to what I want to do in the bigger picture. As a Public Health Major, I am learning about how all aspects of our lives are so inextricably related and directly impact our health. I believe that athletics and academics coupled together create an incredibly healthy lifestyle for youth. It teaches you balance, discipline, and teamwork. It is never too young to promote health in this way – through academics and athletics. I see the athlete visits to the elementary schools as such a perfect way to begin this conversation. The athletes promote and role model being a part of higher education, and they promote healthy lifestyles and the values that being an athlete connote.
The student-athletes that visit the elementary schools are role models for the youth. If they see people that were in their shoes a few years ago, they are more likely to believe that they can do it – that they can make it to college and that they can live healthy, balanced lives. Additionally, the fact that the student-athletes take a few hours of their day to go visit the kids makes the kids feel special and important. It was so rewarding when after the visits I received multiple emails from the P.E. teachers and supervisors at the elementary schools thanking Ink and I for coordinating the visits and making them happen. The kids had a wonderful time, and so did the athletes. We have expanded the visits now to all athletic teams starting in the fall. The ultimate goal is to give everyone a chance to give back to their community and make a difference in the lives of others.
Here are some pictures from the visits. Unfortunately, Seattle Public Schools do not allow us to advertise any pictures that directly show the faces of their students.
Football Education Month 2013
Women in Sports Month 2013