Evanston children will again benefit from full scholarships to summer camps given by Northwestern’s athletic coaches.
The typical Northwestern summer camp can cost as much as $300 and run for up to a week.
While the University donates the scholarships, local nonprofit organizations Family Focus and Youth Organizations Umbrella, Inc. (Y.O.U.) work with Northwestern to distribute the scholarships. This year, Y.O.U. granted more than 50 scholarships to Evanston children ranging from first to eighth grade.
The summer camps are conducted by coaches and student-athletes in 13 sports including basketball, softball, wrestling, swimming, soccer, tennis and volleyball. Children learn the fundamentals of the game and receive coaching on strategy and technique.
“This program is really special because it introduces kids to student-athletes and college life,” said Tonya Patterson, human resources and volunteer coordinator for Y.O.U. “In fact, many of these kids have never even been on a college campus before. They see and do new things, maybe try a sport they’d never considered.”
Upon trying field hockey, for example, some children enjoy the experience so much that they continue to play it long after the summer ends, according to Patterson. Others use their camp experience as a springboard to another sport.