The students, staff and coaches of the Springfield College community are known for their well-rounded demeanor derived from the Spirit, Mind and Body lifestyle. They thrive off of the high that comes from helping others, so it is not unusual for the Birthplace to be the center stage for events, activities and tournaments that have been organized to benefit others.
This month marks the fifth annual Springfield College Special Olympics Volleyball Tournament. The tournament will take place on Sunday, April 26 at 9 a.m. in Blake Arena and the Field House. The Mezzanine area of the Field House will pose as an “Olympic Village” where sponsor stands, games and video games will be available for entertainment purposes.
“The organization does so much for these athletes and to be able to contribute to and enhance an already spectacular event is something that is so beneficial for us, Special Olympics and most importantly, the athletes themselves,” said event coordinator and Springfield College assistant men’s basketball coach, Ryan Coburn.
The team-based environment is an incredibly beneficial way for the participants to undergo the responsibilities of being part of a competitive athletic tournament through skills such as communication and coordination.
“This tournament is really an opportunity for participants to be a part of a team and included in a big event. The atmosphere is so unlike any other sporting event in the level of support shown for one another,” explained Coburn. “Competitors are cheering each other on in success and picking each other up in every aspect of the day, regardless of what team they are playing for. It is honestly as if everyone is there to support one giant team of athletes.”
This incredible tournament could not go on without the help of Springfield College affiliates through donations and volunteer services. However, volunteers are still needed and any kind of donation helps tremendously. Volunteer responsibilities range from acting as a liaison to participating teams, scoring, refereeing and registration.
One’s services at this event can also be used as a means of community service hours for those seeking it. Inquiries can be sent to Ryan Coburn at firstname.lastname@example.org.
“I am always impressed by the eagerness of our students to participate in community partnerships such as this one that Springfield College enjoys with the Special Olympics,” said Springfield College Executive Director of Marketing and Communications, Steve Roulier. “Our students are more than simply volunteers. They are organizers, leaders. I enjoy working with our students at community events, such as the volleyball tournament, because I learn from them. It’s a win-win for everyone.”