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Lycoming College will host a training camp March 29-30 for Special Olympics Pennsylvania athletes preparing for the 2014 Special Olympics USA Games scheduled for June 14-21 in Princeton, N.J. A total of 206 athletes and unified partners from across the state will train for a variety of sports, including aquatics, athletics, basketball, bocce, bowling, golf, gymnastics, powerlifting, soccer, softball, tennis and volleyball.
More than 100 Lycoming students will donate their time to the training camp, including students from the Student Senate, the Education Department and Community Service Center, the Student Athlete Advisory Committee and many of the college’s clubs, organizations and athletic teams.
Marisa Macy, Ph.D., assistant professor of education and an organizer of the event, is enthusiastic about Lycoming’s students participating in the training camp.
“The student involvement is wonderful,” Macy said. “We have students volunteering with various games, the Olympic Village and the dance Saturday night. Students are even donating their Sunday brunch to the athletes. We have such a caring and supportive community here.”
The events, which are free and open to the public, will be held at various times and locations on and off campus. They begin with the Olympic Village from 10 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Saturday, followed by sports camps from 2 to 5 p.m. and a dance from 8:30 to 10 p.m. Sports camps will continue on Sunday from 11 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.
According to Jennifer Tresp, senior competition director for Special Olympics Pennsylvania, the training camp is important for the athletes so that they can meet their teammates, their coaches and prepare for the upcoming games. She added that the college is the perfect location for the camp.
“Lycoming’s facilities are wonderful and the staff could not be more supportive,” Tresp said.
Activities on Lycoming’s campus will be held in the Academic Center, Wertz Student Center, Lamade Gymnasium and the Recreation Center. Off-campus training will be held at Faxon Lanes, Dynamat, South Williamsport Park, Williamsport Tennis Club, White Deer Course and Sons of Italy.
Special Olympics Pennsylvania provides year-round sports training and competition in a variety of Olympic-type sports for children and adults with intellectual disabilities, giving them continuing opportunities to develop physical fitness, demonstrate courage, experience joy and participate in the sharing of gifts, skills and friendship with their families, other Special Olympics athletes and the community.
Lycoming College is a four-year, residential liberal arts and sciences school dedicated to the undergraduate education of 1,400 students. Its rigorous academic program, vibrant residential community and supportive faculty foster successful student outcomes. Lycoming offers 36 academic majors and is recognized as a Tier 1 institution by U.S. News & World Report. Founded in 1812 and located near the banks of the Susquehanna River in Williamsport, Pa., Lycoming is one of the 50 oldest colleges in the nation. For more information, visit www.lycoming.edu.