SOUTHFIELD, Mich. – Being the proverbial “new kids on the collegiate athletic block,” Lawrence Technological University teams have endured some difficulties on the field. However, off the field the players shine like all-stars through their community service activities and commitment to the Live 5 program of the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA).
Live 5 is the NAIA’s new Champions of Character program that teaches student athletes to follow and live by five core values: integrity, respect, responsibility, sportsmanship, and servant leadership. The Blue Devils have been doing just that.
Recently, the men’s and women’s soccer teams sponsored the “Kick out Hunger” food drive to support Gleaners Community Food Bank of Southeastern Michigan. Along with collecting food and money during Homecoming week, the men’s team and Head Coach Will Dyer spent a morning back in August giving a helping hand at the food bank.
“It was great to get together as a team and volunteer to help Gleaners,” said senior captain Chadd Scruggs who really appreciates how Gleaners helps those who are less fortunate.
Freshman midfielder Brandon Reed also liked working on the community service project and appreciated what the teams’ efforts mean to people in need. “I enjoyed working together with my teammates to complete jobs at Gleaners Food Bank that help feed the homeless,” said Reed.
According to Gleaners, the Blue Devils’ donation of 211pounds of food and $36 will feed 266 people in the community.
The Lady Blue Devils also gave back to their sport by coaching the Dearborn Heights Soccer Club (DHSC) youth soccer teams.
DHSC Director of Coaching John Moriarty said he is pleased with the coaching efforts of freshman forward Corynn Moten and junior defender Olivia Ferreira.
“They are a huge asset to our little club and their mere presence makes a positive impression on the players and families that they work with,” said Moriarty. “I held a practice for my U13 girls’ team that is struggling, and the LTU players stopped by my practice for some motivational speaking. I must admit it brought a tear to my eye listening to them address the team. You’re lucky to have such great players playing for you. I can’t thank you enough for these great LTU player-coaches.”
Freshman midfielder Claire Huddas enjoys her involvement with the younger players. “I am looking forward to spending time with my teammates and doing something good for the community,” said Huddas.
The men’s and women’s soccer teams joined the lacrosse team on a project that demonstrated servant leadership. The teams cleaned the pathway between the parking lot and The Pointe where games are held on the LTU campus. The athletes picked up litter, removed trash from the stream, and added a new layer of mulch to the walking path so fans and visiting teams will have a safe and clean route to and from the playing field.
Women’s Soccer Head Coach Jamie Scott said these projects are just the beginning. “LTU Women’s Soccer has plans to be more active in servant leadership and giving back to the community,” said Scott. “The girls understand the importance of giving back. It is another opportunity for them to be together while doing something good.”
Through their actions off the field, these Blue Devil athletes have proven that being a winner in life involves more than what’s on the scoreboard.
Lawrence Technological University, www.ltu.edu, is a private university founded in 1932 that offers more than 100 programs through the doctoral level in its Colleges of Architecture and Design, Arts and Sciences, Engineering, and Management. Bloomberg BusinessWeek lists Lawrence Tech among the nation’s top 20 percent of universities for return on undergraduate tuition investment, and highest in the Detroit metropolitan area. Lawrence Tech is also listed in the top tier of Midwestern universities by U.S. News and World Report and the Princeton Review. Students benefit from small class sizes and experienced faculty who provide a real-world, hands-on, “theory and practice” education with an emphasis on leadership. Activities on Lawrence Tech’s 102-acre campus include over 60 student clubs and organizations and a growing roster of NAIA varsity sports.