Notre Dame (Md.) Awarded First USL 'WILL 2 WIN' Grant

BALTIMORE The College of Notre Dame lacrosse program was awarded the first WILL 2 WIN grant by US Lacrosse. The "W.I.L.L. 2 WIN" (Women In Lacrosse Lead) grant program is offered to NCAA Women's Lacrosse or WDIA Teams committed to increasing at-risk/inner-city middle school girls participation in lacrosse. Through mentoring, skill and team building women's collegiate lacrosse teams who receive funding will use the WILL 2 WIN grants as seed money to develop a meaningful and lasting connection between the middle school program and their own program.

College of Notre Dame head lacrosse coach Melissa Falen, along with the Gator lacrosse team will be mentoring and working with the Barclay Middle School team of Baltimore City.

"This partnership is providing the Notre Dame lacrosse student-athletes the opportunity to be mentors and to experience seeing the impact that they can have on young girls by being role models and mentors," said Notre Dame head lacrosse coach Melissa Falen. "It is a wonderful opportunity for them, through the sport that they love, to give service to others."

The Barclay lacrosse program was started by head coach Erin Curran when she sought and received funds through a US Lacrosse equipment grant. This grant has given her students the opportunity to be introduced to the sport of lacrosse.

Although the Notre Dame lacrosse program was just awarded funds from the WILL 2 WIN grant, the program had already been well on its way to mentoring the Barclay lacrosse team. Notre Dame hosted clinics on March 4th, March 25th. In addition, the Barclay lacrosse players and coaching staff attended Notre Dame's April 21st home game against Washington College. Another clinic was hosted by the Gator program on April 27th. The year will be capped off on June 3rd when the players and coaches from both programs will attend the annual US Lacrosse Hall of Fame dinner.

Short term goals of the program include, but are not limited to: develop positive relationships between mentors and students; for the Barclay students to experience reinforcements and/or improvement in self-esteem and self-confidence; and for students who may not have felt successful in academics to find motivation and success in sport.

Established long-term goals include but are not limited to: Barclay girls to continue to play lacrosse at the high school and potentially the college level; form more partnerships between local colleges and middle schools in Baltimore City; additional city support for middle school girls lacrosse teams; diversity in the sport of women's lacrosse; more city school players to be offered scholarships to play lacrosse in college.

2010-05-16



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