As Gophers head coach Hugh McCutcheon is busy recruiting and planning spring volleyball practice, he took time out of his day to celebrate Read Across America week and World Read Aloud Day on Wednesday, March 5, 2014.
McCutcheon was asked to participate in Jane Meyer's Wagner Elementary
fifth grade-class (Litchfield, Minn.) and their "Wacky Wednesday." Taking part in one of Dr. Seuss' most popular books, McCutcheon read
aloud Green Eggs and Ham via Skype.
Following the book reading, a question and answer session was conducted
with the fifth-graders. The Gopher head coach was one of nine guest
readers for World Read Aloud Day within the Litchfield elementary
Every year on the first Wednesday of March,
World Read Aloud Day calls global attention to the importance of reading
aloud. At least 793 million people worldwide remain illiterate,
including two-thirds women. World Read Aloud Day is in its fourth year
and over 60 countries around the globe participated in the event.
Read more about WRAD here
Special thanks to Luke Stordahl for the video contribution.
Gopher Athletics assisted the Unlimited Dance Marathon to
raise $83,746.59 in monetary and gift in kind donations, all of which goes
towards Amplatz Children's Hospital. The University of Minnesota went from
raising $13,800 in 2012 and 2013 combined to raising $83,746.59 this year. Gopher student-athletes, the Greek community and the general student body came out to support Amplatz and Unlimited, Feb. 22-23 at Mariucci Arena. Here's a look at what was being said on social media.
Written by Chris Hawthorne, Student Affairs Intern and Unlimited Executive Board Member
If you aren't familiar with the back story of Unlimited, here's an article from the Pioneer Press.
putting the finishing touches on what should be an incredible event for
all involved. Some of the last minute logistics we are working on are
finalizing the schedule, figuring out who is performing and what is
happening when, what drawings we will do when, and just putting in a
couple things to make this event as special as it should be. I think
that the event from start to finish is something that this University
can be really proud of and should be something that the students,
alumni, families, and children can all really enjoy. We are really
encouraging people to get there early and to start getting into position
around 5 so when we recognize the families and children that will be
there, they can get the reception they truly deserve.
will have a fully operational concession stand that will have all the
food, drinks, and candy that anyone could want at discounted rates which
will be great for all that come to this great event. We also have a
bounce house, lots of giveaways and drawings, student-athletes and
student group performances, motivational speeches, food, and lots of
dancing. All in all, the night should and will be incredible and we hope
each and every person that gets to read this can help make history and
can come be apart of something that will bring our school, our students,
our community together like never before.
Some items we'll be giving away
* Sun Country Round Trip Tickets (continental United States)
* Flexdine Gift Cards
* Minnesota Wild Tickets
* Golden Gopher Autographed Items
DONATE TO AMPLATZ AND UNLIMITED DANCE MARATHON
The Gopher Athletics department held a special ceremony at the Feb. 8 game at Ridder Arena. The Gophers welcomed back one of their former hockey players Jenelle (Philipczyk) Kelley and her husband, Ben, at the game against Bemidiji State. Jenelle and Ben's daughter, Lilah, who is two years old, is battling a rare form of nervous system cancer (neuroblastoma). Lilah's aunt, Jenessa Philipczyk, is a member of the Beaver hockey team as the two teams combined to raise awareness towards cancer. In a Gold Out celebration, funds were raised for Unlimited and the Amplatz Chilren's Hospital, where Lilah has been a recent patient.
Written by Chris Hawthorne, Student Affairs Intern and Unlimited Executive Board Member
is in the final stages of planning and preparation as we get ready to
hold the first annual Unlimited Dance Marathon, Feb. 22-23 in Mariucci Arena. As we begin putting the
final touches on the schedule and events we will have this year, it's
been incredible to spend a little bit of time thinking about where we
were two years ago and how far we've come.
To say it's been a lot of
work would truly be an understatement, but it's been something that has
been so rewarding and has been something through which I, personally,
have learned so much. I have been able to apply many of the things that I
have learned in classes here at the U to real life scenarios and
situations. It has also been really rewarding to work with so many
incredible people, from all the different areas within the athletics
department, to different students and student groups on campus, to
different members of Greek life, to various other areas of campus that
would take far too long to list, everyone that I have had the chance to
work with has been great.
forward to the event, I couldn't be more excited for all that's going
to take place. Coming off of a logistical meeting with Craig Flor and
his staff at Mariucci, I am so excited to see the incredible things that
they will pull off from the venue and staging perspective. From
curtains to lighting to speakers to a/v and cameras, his staff along
with the communications, marketing, and various other parts of the
athletic department have teamed up to put on something that I really
think people will have a great time at.
We have put the final touches on
the music plan, have met with the DJ's, have began the slotting process
of which student groups will perform when, are finalizing which
children and families will speak when, and have a couple of surprise on
campus celebrities that we are hoping will make an appearance.
Additionally, we are finalizing what great items we will have for our
auction which will be up on the concourse during the entire 12 hours.
Just as a teaser, we will have a great giveaway for Spring Break that
people and especially students and families won't want to miss.
in all, we are in a great place right now. We have a lot of work left
to do over the last few weeks, but we can't wait to see everyone at 6pm on February 22nd at Mariucci Arena.
The University of Minnesota women's hockey team was in full force as 14 members of the team volunteered with the Special Olympics at the state poly hockey tournament, Sunday, Jan. 26 in Golden Valley, Minn.
The Gopher contingent of Milica McMillen, Sidney Peters, Amanda Leveille, Kate Flug, Kate Schipper, Hannah Brandt, Dani Cameranesi, Paige Haley, Kelsey Cline, Shyler Sletta, Baylee Gillianders, Sarah Davis, Bethany Brausen and Kelly Terry were in attendance from 12-6. The group interacted with the participants and presented awards during the Special Olympics ceremony.
The Gopher women's hockey team has always had a long-standing tradition of community service. Earlier this month, the team held a teddy bear toss
to donate to Toys for Tots, while Feb. 8 game against Bemidiji State, the team will hold a Gold Out as proceeds go towards Amplatz Children's Hospital and Unlimited Dance Marathon
The J Robinson Intensive Camps aren't just making wrestlers
better as athletes, but as individuals. Along with teaching the core
values of discipline, dedication, sacrifice, hard work, responsibility,
accountability and service, the camps also teaches them to give back to a
The 37-year head coach and his youth camps donated $5,701 to
the Smile Network International and presented a check towards the non-profit
organization at their monthly luncheon, Thursday, Jan. 23 in Minneapolis.
The Smile Network is a Minnesota-based non-profit,
humanitarian organization that provides life altering, reconstructive surgeries
and related health care services to impoverished children and young adults in
developing countries. For every $500 raised, the Smile Network has the
ability to perform a surgery on a child or adult.
Each summer, youth wrestlers who attend the J Robinson
Intensive Camps have the opportunity to donate money towards the Smile Network.
At the conclusion, Robinson Intensive Camps match the total youth donation, all
of which goes directly towards the Smile Network. Now in its fifth year
donating towards the Smile Network, the camps have raised over $7,000 in just the
past two seasons.
The Highland Friendship Club's seventh annual Lanes for Friendship event took place last weekend. Gopher baseball coaches and student-athletes attended to bowl and spend time with other participants.
Pat Leseman, the mother of former Gopher baseball player Tony Leseman, founded the HFC in 2002. From the organization's website: "The mission of the Highland Friendship Club is to serve individuals with disabilities from teens through adulthood by providing a range of opportunities to develop lifelong skills, friendships and connections within their community."
By Andrew Doughty
Student-Athlete Development Intern
University of Minnesota student-athletes visited Countryside Elementary School in Edina on Wednesday, October 30th as part of the "Eat Smart, Play Hard" program.
"Eat Smart, Play Hard" is an interactive and engaging program with a mission of educating elementary school children on the importance of eating healthy and exercising.
Student-athletes from football, women's swimming and diving, rowing, and baseball reviewed different forms of basic physical activity, healthy alternative snacks, and making smart decisions for your body.
"It's a great chance for kids to visually see the importance of proper nutrition and physical activity," said Chris Hawthorne, a senior on the football team. "It is also a tremendous opportunity to really connect with kids in promoting daily dietary habits and daily exercises."
The group of eager children from kindergarten through third grade was also treated to entertaining videos created by former Gopher student-athletes Josh Hall (Men's Swimming & Diving) and Lucy Ennis (Women's Gymnastics).
The videos further stressed the message of moderate portions of healthy snacks and exploring new ways to get adequate exercise.
The program concluded as the student-athletes passed out fruit and granola bars to the inquisitive group of students prior to spending a few moments answering entertaining and mildly amusing questions.