The East Coast Conference Community Engagement Award of Excellence is presented annually to the institution that hosts an activity on their campus that embodies the principles of community engagement by building relationships and bridging the gap between campus and community. This year's winner is D'Youville University for their Lead Her Forward event.
D'Youville was joined by NFL Senior Director of Diversity and Inclusion, Sam Rapoport, in hosting the Lead Her Forward youth clinic. Participants from West Side Community Center, Boys & Girls Club, Delaware Youth Soccer Club, Public School #3, and D'Youville family campus members.
Rapoport was recently named one of Sports Illustrated Most Powerful, Most Influential, and Most Outstanding Women in Sports. She was also included in The Athletics' NFL 40-Under-40. In 2019, Rapoport was awarded the NFL Commissioner's Award, Fortune 40-Under-40, and was recently named one of People Magazine's 25 Women Changing the World.
The clinic was free and included giveaways of a Lead Her Forward coloring book, shirt, foam finger, and footballs to those selected as Saint award winners. Participants engaged in physical activity, as well as a writing workshop to develop teamwork skills, leadership traits, and enhance character building. D'Youville student-athletes participated in coaching the younger generation to not only empower participants but to recognize their potential impact as leaders.
The award comes with a $500 grant from the ECC to be used towards community efforts during the 2022-23 season.
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