Little Longhorns on campus
Oct. 28, 2009
Joey Jewell, Texas Media Relations
AUSTIN, Texas -- Hundreds of Austin ISD students descended on Mike A. Myers Stadium this past Sunday to not only watch the Longhorns' 1-0 double overtime victory over Colorado but to also take part in The Neighborhood Longhorn Program's 2nd Annual University Federal Credit Union Math Challenge Kick-off.
The event kicks-off the UFCU Math Challenge program designed to enhance interest in math and continuing education for students in 28 AISD elementary and middle schools. Not only did the students get a chance to develop their math knowledge, but they were also able to see the University of Texas and what the college campus looked like.
According to Luis Murillo, the Director of Programs at The Neighborhood Longhorn Program, "We want to familiarize the students with the UT campus. Our goal is to get these students to believe that college is an obtainable option. That if you work hard enough, anything is possible."
The students participated in a math quiz before the game, and were treated to hot dogs and soft drinks as they witnessed the double overtime victory for the Longhorns. After the game, the students were allowed on field to participate in a clinic led by the Longhorn soccer team.
"It [the event] means the world to them, to be out here on campus. They love anything that has to do with the Longhorns," says Geneva Garcia, Site Coordinator for Palm elementary.
The Neighborhood Longhorn Program serves economically disadvantaged youth in grades 2 through 8 who are at higher risks of experiencing academic difficulties, including low grade performance, low performance on tests, low school attendance and higher rates of dropping out of school.
The event also gave the UT soccer team an opportunity to give back to the community.
"I think we are really lucky to get the opportunity to participate. I have been given so much from the University and it really feels good to be able to give something back to the community," said junior defender Kate Nicholson.
Nicholson's favorite part of the event occurred immediately after the clinic when she asked an excited little girl if she had fun and the little girl responded with, "I had so much fun, I really want to start playing soccer now!"
The enthusiasm of the students and the reward of having such an impact was a pleasant release after a weekend filled with two double overtime games.
"The event was really fun, and it was pretty cool to hang out with kids after the game. It was a nice change of pace," said Nicholson.