Jefferson U student-athletes score big in volunteer challenge
Student-athletes from various sports teamed up to give Thomas Jefferson University – and the community surrounding it – a win that won’t show up in their respective team standings, but it’s even more important than those that do.
During the fall of 2019, Rams student-athletes participated in the NCAA Team Works and Helper Helper Challenge, a community-service mission. In doing so, the baseball team topped the Central Atlantic Collegiate Conference (and was second among all DII conferences) in the NCAA Team Works and Helper Helper Challenge, while Jefferson cracked the Top 10.
The results were announced in mid-January.
Team Works coordinates community service efforts, while Helper Helper is a volunteer management and tracking platform. The Challenge, which ran from September to November, tracks the number of service hours completed by student-athletes.
According to Pat Horvath – the university’s Coordinator of Community Engagement and head baseball coach – Rams student-athletes logged 3,583 total hours of community engagement. Of that, the baseball team averaged 32 hours per student-athlete, logging nearly 1,500 hours collectively.
Horvath said the ranking is emblematic of increased community engagement levels each year since 2015.
“We have built great relationships with Athletes Helping Athletes, Special Olympics Pennsylvania, Beats for Bella, Team IMPACT and Erving Youth Basketball Experience,” Horvath said. “With these partnerships, our athletic department has been able to have a greater impact on the youth in our area.
“The Student Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) has done tremendous job of hosting and organizing our community engagement events and getting involvement from student-athletes.”