Oct. 20, 2017
COLUMBUS, Ohio – This year, the Ohio State Department of Athletics has kicked off a new program to offer Buckeye student-athletes an opportunity for personal growth outside of their sport. The two areas of focus for the inaugural year of ‘Sundays in the Shoe’ are healthy relationships and financial literacy.
“After gathering feedback from coaches and student-athletes, we thought Sunday evenings could be a great opportunity to gather the student-athletes in an interactive and casual environment,” Carey Fagan, assistant athletics director for sport and student-athlete well-being at Ohio State, who developed the program, said. “There are so many great meeting spots on campus, but nowhere better than Ohio Stadium. This spot is a convenient and cool place to gather and learn – and that is the way Sundays in the Shoe came to be.”
Eight Sundays in the Shoe sessions are offered during the year and include a meal, followed by an hour presentation. Student-athletes are required to attend at least one session per semester, but can select the date and topic of their choice.
Two sessions have been held so far, with 120 attending the first event in September and more than 170 gathering in October for a presentation on “How to Influence Leadership” with Chet Scott, CEO of Built to Lead, a Columbus-based company. Chet discussed the importance of knowing who you are, before you can influence anyone. He encouraged the athletes to start writing about what they believe and for them to become the biggest influence in their own lives.
“One of the things we really focused on with this program is finding speakers who are experts in their fields, and who are able to deliver an engaging dynamic presentation,” Fagan said. “We want to reach these young people in ways that will make a difference in their everyday lives.”
The topic for the November session is “Offensive and Defensive Strategies; How to have a healthy relationship – AND get out of a bad one,” with Kwain Bryant presenting.
“These sessions are meant to be interactive, fun and casual,” Fagan said. “The students check in Snapchat and during dinner we play music and they are able to spend time together both with their own teammates and with athletes from other teams. Once we introduce the speaker, we hopefully deliver a message that resonates with them and they leave feeling energized and ready to start a new week.”