By Micheal Rios, Tulalip News
On Friday, February 3, the always energetic morning assembly at Quil Ceda Tulalip Elementary (QCT) received a special visit from the very successful Skagit Valley College women’s basketball team, featuring Tulalip’s own Adiya Jones.
The assembly focused on the importance of staying in school and doing your best every day in and out of the classroom. The student-athletes of Skagit Valley passed the mic around and told the youthful students about the importance of being a good citizen in order to achieve their dreams.
Hearing Adiya and her teammates speak on the values that they as college student-athletes feel are important is a source of inspiration for the young, spirited minds of QCT. Especially when it comes to being able to hear from Adiya, who grew up in Tulalip, went to school in Tulalip, and is now succeeding on the college level.
“Assemblies like this are a win-win for everyone involved,” says Steve Epperson, Skagit Valley Athletic Director and women’s basketball coach. “The college team gets the experience of talking with students, answering questions, talking about their experiences and challenges they faced with being successful in school. They also get to talk about their college experience and the importance of staying in school, being good citizens, and studying. All values that are required of students today.”
For the elementary students, they not only got to see and hear from student-athlete role models, but also got to interact with them on the basketball court. The women hoopers held interactive demonstrations with the students that included various dribbling drills, a shooting display, and a short scrimmage.
Following the assembly, the Skagit Valley athletes split up and went to individual classrooms where they got to further interact with the students. They helped them with their in-class assignments and continued to answer questions about college and playing basketball.
The Quil Ceda Tulalip / Skagit Valley experience was beneficial not only for the younger students, but for the college students as well.
“I think that’s really good for both groups,” adds Coach Epperson. “The elementary students get to see role models, ask questions, and see how exciting it can be to be successful in college. While being a valuable experience for the college students, too, as learn to step up as role models and give back to their communities.”