EDWARDSVILLE, Ill. – An SIUE Athletics Department mentoring program, now in its third year, continues to pay dividends not only for local middle schools but also SIUE student-athletes.
Each month, SIUE student-athletes engage in mentoring conversations with students from Edwardsville Liberty and Lincoln Middle Schools. The goal of the community service initiative is to open a dialogue on relevant topics to young teenagers such as bullying, stress, exercise, self-esteem, and drugs and alcohol while participating in interactive games and activities on SIUE’s campus.
“SIUE is a great resource for our students at Liberty and Lincoln,” said Mark Tschudy, a prevention counselor at Lincoln Middle School. “Building a relationship with the athletes not only is something the students look forward to but also is a great way to introduce our students to positive role models.”
The mentoring program seeks to provide positive role models for area youth, to give back to the community, to form a lasting bond, and to present ideals in sync with the University’s values of citizenship, excellence, inclusion, integrity, and wisdom.
“Our golfers had a great time playing pool and ping pong with the kids,” said SIUE Director of Golf Coach Derrick Brown. “We feel that this program provides a positive influence for the kids in the after school program. It is an event we always look forward to.”
The men’s golf, women’s golf, and wrestling teams participated in the most recent January event. SIUE student-athletes and coaches from all of SIUE’s 18 sports also have committed to mentoring dates in February through April.
“This program introduces our students to an age group they may not typically associate with,” Tschudy said. “Wednesday’s activity helped our students become more familiar with college-aged students and showcased the leadership skills of the athletes.”
For more information about the program, contact the SIUE Athletics Department at 618-650-2871.