April 16, 2014
NEW ORLEANS - Elementary students from McDonogh #32 Literacy Charter School and Martin Behrman Charter School received a taste of what it's like to be a college student at Tulane University this past Sunday, April 13, as 17 Green Wave student-athletes spent the morning and afternoon with the students on the Uptown campus for Wave Days.
The Tulane student-athletes contingent included Roni Meyer (swimming and diving), Holly Grender (swimming and diving), Kayte Magee (women's basketball), Emily Dvorak (women's tennis), Ipek Birol (women's tennis), Klara Vyskocilova (women's tennis), Jacqui Katz (women's tennis), Meredith Malby (women's tennis), Hannah Ryan (bowling), Kierstyn Rush (bowling), Kelsie Kelly (bowling), Jay Hook (men's basketball), Max Keenan (men's basketball), Kevin Thomas (men's basketball), Thomas Lynch (track and field), Nathan Shienle (football) and Preston Paine (football). The group spent the better part of their day showing the students from grades 4-7 that college is an achievable goal after high school.
The Tulane student-athletes and the visiting students kicked off the day with a tour of Tulane's campus. The Green Wave student-athletes broke into groups of two, where they had the opportunity to spend time with a small group of the younger students, which allowed questions to be asked and answered about the many different opportunities Tulane, and college in general has to offer.
Following the tour, the group visited the James W. Wilson Jr. Center, where they played some icebreaker games, followed by a lunch of pizza.
Towards the end of the event, the group went to Greer Field at Turchin Stadium for Tulane baseball's afternoon contest against Rice.
"In each instance, these kids had never been on Tulane's campus before," said Tulane Associate Athletic Director and Senior Woman Administrator, Sue Bower, who heads up the Wave Days. "They were amazed and in awe of how big the school was and how they could have access to all of it as a college student."
Not only did the students who attended Wave Days get useful information as how to better their chances on getting into college, but many of the chaperones and teachers that accompanied them got an earful, as well.
"I talked a lot to the teachers about the opportunities that financial aid has to offer. If these kids take care of their academics, many universities will find ways through grants to have these students attend Tulane or other great schools," Bower said
"The important thing is that these students need to see that it's more than just a one-schoolhouse environment. Our student-athletes do a phenomenal job of promoting Tulane and the importance of education," Bower added
On top of getting a taste of what it's like to be a student at Tulane, the students from the two schools got to witness the student-athletes, who showed them around, earn praise for getting their work done in the classroom, as the 17 student-athletes were honored as members of the Tulane 3.0 Club before the baseball game against Rice.
"It was a very rewarding day," said Paine, a rising senior offensive lineman. "I love being able to help and influence the youth in this area. While we had a good time, I think the students who came got a lot out of it, as well."
The purpose of the Wave Days program is to expose New Orleans' youth to the collegiate environment while conveying a message that attending college is an attainable goal.
Every semester, Tulane student-athletes participate in Wave Days, in conjunction with a football game in the fall and either a basketball or baseball game in the spring. Fall Wave Days will be held on campus for the first time since its inception later this year with the opening of Yulman Stadium.