Happenings | Springfield College

Center’s Children’s Book Chosen as Core Book for Rhode Island Reading Program

Rudy’s Secret CAP by Al Petitpas and Judy Van Raalte was selected as a core reading book for July 2016 by Let’s Read – Rhode Island. Rudy’s Secret CAP is a children’s book that introduces youth to several life skills, including staying cool, asking for help, and focusing on positives. The Springfield College men’s basketball team has used Rudy’s Secret CAP for the past several years as part of its community service to local elementary schools.

Staff Conducts Training Workshop for the National Schools Program

Al Petitpas and Ted France conducted a workshop on how to build partnerships with community-based organizations with physical education teachers and community champions from the National Schools Program (NSP). The workshop took place on June 21, 2016, in St. Augustine, Fla., as part of NSP’s National Summit Institute.

Center Staff Participate in Teaching Personal and Social Responsibility Conference

Al Petitpas and Ted France participated in the Teaching Personal and Social Responsibility (TPSR) conference held in Boston, June 23-25, 2016. The TPSR conference brought together educators from the United States and a number of other countries to participate in a think tank that identified best practices in program delivery, staff development, evaluation, and research.

Director Conducts Workshop for Academic Coaches at AthLife Foundation’s National Training Conference

During the AthlLife Foundation Conference, July 13-17, 2016, in Philadelphia, Al Petitpas, director of the Center for Youth Development and Research, conducted a workshop for educators training to become academic coaches as part of AthLife Foundation’s program to connect adult mentors with high school student-athletes across the country.

Springfield College alumnus Jeff McCann, who received a Master of Education in psychology with a concentration in athletic counseling, serves as the managing director of the foundation, which is the non-profit portion AthLife.

The First Tee Releases the Results of a Major Study Completed by the Center

The First Tee, a youth development organization that uses the game of golf as a vehicle to help youth gain valuable life skills and core values, released results from a study conducted by Liz Mullen, Ted France, and Al Petitpas with assistance from several physical education and athletic counseling graduate students in July 2016. The study examined the beliefs of teenaged participants and alumni of The First Tee concerning their acquisition of life skills and the quality of their relationships with their The First Tee coaches. See the research findings here.

Center Teams Up with Shriners Hospital to Create Positive Youth Development Experience for Patients

The Center for Youth Development and Research, in collaboration with Shiners Hospital in Springfield, will be implementing an eight-session golf-related experience for young patients who are experiencing a variety of emotional and physical challenges. Under the leadership of Ted France and Al Petitpas, the center staff will create the training activities; recruit, and train Springfield College student volunteers; and conduct the sessions on consecutive Thursdays in late March through April 2016. A culminating event took place at the Connecticut The First Tee chapter located at the TPC in Cromwell, Conn., on April 30, 2016.

Center to Sponsor a Celebration of Community Youth

Working in collaboration with the Black Men of Greater Springfield civic group, the Center for Youth Development and Research sponsored a one-day event on May 21, 2016, 8:30 a.m. to 1 p.m., during which area youth will be able to participate in a variety of activities offered by more than 20 local community youth serving organizations. The event was be held in the Field House at Springfield College. The goal of the event was to build stronger collaboration among community partners in hopes of involving more youth in positive developmental experiences.

Most Read Publication from Springfield College comes from Center

Research Gate announced that the Center for Youth Development and Research’s “A framework for planning youth sport programs that foster psychosocial development,” published in The Sport Psychologist, is the most widely read publication from Springfield College in 2016. The proposed framework has been adopted by several youth sport organizations including Play It Smart, The First Tee, Project Rebound, Academics in Motion, the Montreal Alouettes’ On Point, and the AthLife Foundation.

Director Receives AthLife Foundation’s Youth Inspire Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Youth Development through Sport

Center for Youth Development and Research Al Petitpas was awarded the AthLife Foundation’s Youth Inspire Award for Distinguished Professional Contributions to Youth Development through Sport at the AthLife Foundation Conference, held in Philadelphia, July 13-17. The AthLife Youth Inspire Award was created to honor elite athletes who have had a strong positive impact on their communities. Past awardees include former and current NFL players Marshawn Lynch, Joshua Johnson, and Scotty McGee. This year, Will Allen and Zamir Cobb were honored for their “selfless dedication and using their status to positively impact their respective communities and inspire us and the next generation in their future endeavors”. The Youth Inspire Distinguished Professional Contributions Award was created this year to honor Petitpas for his many contributions to the field. Petitpas is pictured with Springfield College alumni Phyllis Lerner and Jeff McCann.