April 21, 0218

Inner-city Youth Learn Ways to Tap Their "Inner Power"

More than 35 inner-city youth will visit West Chester University to learn how to dream big and tap into their inner power on Saturday, April 21, 9 am – 3:00 p.m. on South Campus at the College of Health Sciences, Sturzebecker Health Science Center (Gym), 855 South New Street, West Chester, PA. WCU Sports Psychologist Margaret Ottley, a mental performance specialist who has trained elite Olympic athletes to defeat mental hurdles, and the graduate student teachers in her Applied Sport & Exercise Psychology class will collaborate with the Philadelphia-based Black Women in Sport Foundation (BWSF) and the Global Leadership Academy/Global Academies to empower the youth through action-packed fitness, leadership, and team-building activities.

Cast asDream Big: Play Like You Know --- Your Inner Power,the full-day program will help the youth learn about the science of movement and self-care through hands-on activities that explore anatomy & physiology, exercise physiology, and biomechanics. Careers in the fields will also be discussed. Highlighting the day will be surprise visits from two top U.S. athletes, Kyle Garland and Ajee Wilson, who will share secrets about how they build confidence and prepare to compete. As a top U.S. youth decathlete, Kyle Garland made his international debut in 2017 at the National Scholastic Athletic Foundation’s Caribbean Scholastic International meet held in Cuba, and was a member of Team USA Track & Field for the IAAF’s Pan American Junior Games in Peru. U.S. 800 meter record holder Ajee Wilson secured gold medals at the 2011 World Youth Championship in France and the 2012 World Junior Championship in Spain, as well as a bronze medal in the 2017 World Championship in London.

Mentors for the program are BWSF President Tina Sloan-Green, the first African-American coach in the history of women’s collegiate lacrosse and BWSF co-founder; BWSF Site Coordinator Germaine Edwards; Wellness Consultant for Global Academies Jiana Murdic; and Community Activist Ethyl McGee, retired principal, School District of Philadelphia.Learn more about BWSF.

The one-day youth camp, which is now in its second year, is supported by West Chester University’s Office of the Dean in the College of Health Sciences, as well as the Office of Service-Learning and Volunteer Programs (SLVP), which funded/trained Community Engagement Scholar and Program Liaison Katelyn Koser. External support has been provided by WCU alumnus Jonathan Edwards, physical education educator, Wordsworth Academy, Philadelphia; Selen Razon, assistant professor of kinesiology, WCU; and Alison Donley, yoga instructor, WCU. In-kind support has been provided by the National Scholastic Athletic Foundation (NSAF), owner and host of the New Balance National Youth Indoor and Outdoor meets in the U.S. NSAF will supply the youth with energy bars, backpacks, caps, and other apparel.

Margaret Ottley