JumpStart participants reflect on experience

Mount Mercy’s JumpStart program, held at the Robert W. Plaster Athletic Complex from June 12-July 27, inspires Cedar Rapids children to reach their educational potential through leadership and growth opportunities.

“I moved to the Cedar Rapids area in fourth grade. I grew up three blocks away from the new Plaster Athletic Complex. I rode my my bike or walked to, around, through Mount Mercy's campus almost daily," said Assistant Athletics Director Jason Pershing. "The university and the Hill has played a huge part in my life. Allowing the students to use our facilities is a needed aspect to how the university can serve our community."

See what some of the children and MMU student coaches thought of JumpStart!

Addison, JumpStart participant

"I actually did this last year ... I knew I really enjoyed it, and it was something I wanted to do again. So, when I found out I had the opportunity to do it again, I wanted to do it. I just like bonding with the coaches and just hanging out with all the other kids." 

- Addison 

Estella, JumpStart participant

"My favorite part is running around and all the coaches."

- Estella

Chance, JumpStart participant

"I get to run around and be goalie. I did last year, and it was really fun."

- Chance 

Abigail, JumpStart participant

"I like everything. Every single thing. And I am spending time with my best friend, Leila." 

- Abigail

Davarea Loggins

"When they call you to sit with them, it’s just the little things I like a lot. Just the interaction."

Davarea Loggins, coach 

Jeanette Blasi, JumpStart coach

"Every kid is different, and they’re different every day. We can somehow cater to their needs in some ways, but we never know what each day is going to bring us. So, we always have to just be very flexible with them and go at their pace. It’s pretty fun to see their minds work."

- Jeanette Blasi, coach


View the JumpStart photo album.

Watch the KCRG-TV9 interview with Assistant Athletics Director Jason Pershing.

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