Bucknell Student-Athletes Encourage Local Youths to Read Like a Champion
Feb. 11, 2009
LEWISBURG, Pa. -- Eighteen Bucknell student-athletes, representing 11 different varsity sports programs, visited the kindergarten classes at Kelly Elementary School as well as the Lewisburg Public Library last week as part of the Bucknell department of athletics and recreation's youth literacy campaign.
In conjunction with Bucknell's annual celebration of National Girls and Women in Sports Day, Bison student-athletes are promoting their "Read Like a Champion" initiative to local youths.
Last Thursday, the Bucknell student-athletes paired up and visited each of the eight kindergarten classes at Kelly Elementary and read the children's book "Do Princesses Scrape Their Knees," by Carmela LaVigna Coyle. Later that day, another group of Bison read the book to kids during storytime at the town's public library.
This story is about a young girl's introduction to the world of sports, and that doing your best is what matters most. In addition to reading and discussing the story, the Bison student-athletes stressed to the children that reading is both important and fun. At the end of the session, the student-athletes autographed the books, then donated them to the classrooms.
The kindergarteners also received a special surprise with an appearance by Bucky Bison. The Bison mascot was inundated with hugs and high-fives, some even coming from the teachers.
At the Bucknell-Lafayette women's basketball game at Sojka Pavilion on Wednesday, Feb. 18, representatives from the Lewisburg Public Library will be on hand to promote their library card campaign, encouraging children to sign up for their very own library card.
That night will also be National Girls and Women in Sports Night at Sojka, with face painting, poster making and an autograph session among the planned activities.
Last Wednesday, Bucknell kicked off its National Girls & Women in Sports Day celebration with a luncheon dedicated to recognizing the university's female student-athletes and encouraging the Lewisburg community to begin, restart or continue an active and healthy lifestyle. Highlighting the luncheon were addresses from three members of the Bucknell athletic community. Student-athletes Page Kannor and Megan Mongan joined Lisa Verge, a former student-athlete at Bloomsburg and current Bucknell staff member and softball volunteer assistant coach, in sharing how their decisions to lead active lives have influenced them.
The student-athletes who participated in the "Read Like a Champion" program were Matt Antonelli and Joe Mele from men's lacrosse; Ben Bible from men's swimming & diving; Abigail Atkinson and Susan Horstmann from women's swimming & diving; Deirdre Moran, Katsie Calhoun and Minjoo Lee from women's golf; Devon Mitchell from women's rowing; Kaytlin Senatore from softball; Gary Bush from men's track & field; Jaime Rasmussen and Christina Muccio from women's track & field; Lindsay Smith and Kaitlin Segal from volleyball; Cory Bishop and Ryan Sappington from men's soccer; Cal Tracy from baseball and Megan DeGennaro from women's soccer.