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July 25, 2019

JumpStart participants reflect on experience

JumpStart Gives Variety of Experiences

Mount Mercy’s JumpStart program inspires Cedar Rapids children to reach their educational potential through leadership and growth opportunities.

The program, held at the Robert W. Plaster Athletic Complex from June 12–27, grew significantly from its first year to this year.

“I moved to the Cedar Rapids area in fourth grade,” said Jason Pershing, assistant athletics director. “I grew up three blocks away from the new Plaster Athletic Complex. I rode my bike or walked to, around and through Mount Mercy’s campus almost daily. 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.”

Allowing the students to use our facilities is a needed aspect to how the university can serve our community.

Jason Pershing
Assistant Athletics Director
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“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, JumpStart participant
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“I get to run around and be goalie. I did last year, and it was really fun.”

Chance, JumpStart participant
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“My favorite part is running around and all the coaches.”

Estella, JumpStart participant
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“I like everything. Every single thing. And I am spending time with my best friend, Leila.”

Abigail, JumpStart participant
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“When they call you to sit with them, it’s just the little things I like a lot. Just the interaction.”

Davarea Loggins, student coach
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“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, student coach

View the JumpStart photo album

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