August 24th, 2013 | Uncategorized
Hello all! I’m trying to write with a bit more enthusiasm than I actually feel, as I am on the verge of tears at the moment. After we completed our week of training in Northern Ireland, all of us scholars went on a tour of Ireland to work camps and learn a bit more about the country. Since today is the last day of the tour, we are all currently on buses on the way to our universities in Limerick, Galway, Dublin, and Belfast. The family type of bond that the ten of us have formed in less than two weeks is unlike anything that I have experienced before. Now we are all off to our own schools, hours apart from each other – not “happy days”, as they like to say over here.
This past week in Ireland has been completely jam packed with camps, tours, and overall good times. Our first stop was in Dublin, which had a Manhattan type of feeling, minus all the skyscrapers. Our second stop was in Clonmel, a country town that resembled more of how I pictured Ireland – acres of open fields with cows and horses grazing. From attending a National Irish semi-final hurling game in Dublin in a stadium filled with almost 60,000 fans to presenting a trophy to a winner at the Tipperary Racecourse, our short time in Ireland has left us each with a few spectacular, lifelong memories.
Within the past two weeks, it really hit me how special it is to be a Victory Scholar. I think it dawned on me after seeing one of the campers burst into tears as we were leaving our last basketball camp in Clonmel. I honestly never thought kids would be so appreciative of just two or three days of camp hosted by a few scholars from America. But not only did they run to give us hugs as we were leaving and ask for our autographs, whenever we did Q&A at the camps the kids all listened closely and quietly to our advice about what it takes to succeed in sports and in the classroom. All in all, it’s a special type of feeling to know that we have that type of positive impact on young people. Until next time, readers!