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Wayne State training program prepares coaches to inspire future athletes
Coaches play an integral role in motivating athletes, whether they go on to become future Olympians or take the lessons learned on the field into the office. Knowing the important role they play in young lives, Ronald Simpkins aims to train quality coaches who encourage a lifetime of good sportsmanship.
Through the Volunteers Administrators and Coaches (VAC) training program, Simpkins – a former NFL linebacker – facilitates workshops for prospective coaches and youth sports administrators. Supported by the College of Education, VAC provides training from February through May to individuals 14 and older.
“As a high school student I had a really good basketball coach who encouraged me. In turn, I wanted to create a program to impact the city and give kids a good youth sports experience,” Simpkins says. “Sports changed my life. I’ve seen the difference that quality programs and coaches make in a young person’s life.”
In addition to his work with VAC, Simpkins is a project coordinator for the Detroit Recreation Department and varsity athletic coach at Western International High School. Through August, Simpkins and his team are running youth summer programs for basketball, cheerleading, fencing and golf on the WSU campus.
For more information about VAC and summer programs at Wayne State, visit education.wayne.edu/grants/vac.