Lana Hiskey

Athletic leaders from secondary schools in Nebo School District gathered on November 28, 2018, for Captains’ Academy, a program implemented to increase communication and friendship among student athletes and encourage sportsmanship and leadership.

Captains’ Academy was created back in 2009. Since that time, student athletes and school leaders have met three times annually to discuss how sportsmanship and leadership can be implemented in their given sport. Teachers and community members have seen unity and sportsmanship increase among student athletes at athletic events since these meetings began.

First, health specialist Kaimana Fisher, LiVe Well Center, talked about the importance being and staying healthy. He stressed the importance of all kinds of health including physical, social, financial, and more.

Next, Marc Amicone, General Manager of the Salt Lake Bees, spoke about the importance of leadership. He said, “Leadership is about being a great teammate. We will all be part of a lot of teams in life, including the teams of family, friends, clubs, sports, and more. The more we can embrace that, the better chance we have for success.”

Amicone continued, “You need to think like a coach. Great coaches don’t hit the home runs, make the baskets, or score the touchdowns. Coaches make those around them better and encourage everyone to perform their best.”

Last, Gregg Smith, former basketball coach at Spanish Fork High and current history teacher at Maple Mountain High, talked about sportsmanship. One of Smith’s favorite historical heroes is Joshua Lawrence Chamberlain, a Union General who was awarded a Medal of Honor for his sacrifices in the Battle of Gettysburg. Chamberlain and his men, having no ammunition to defend themselves, courageously charged toward the opposing side with their bayonets, many losing their lives for freedom. This act and subsequent victory has been said to be a turning point of the war. “What would you do in that situation?” Smith asked. “Courage,” Smith continued, “is key to sportsmanship. Have the courage to lead.”

Troy Bohling, Coordinator of School Services and head of Captains’ Academy, said, “Through Captains’ Academy, we hope students get a better idea of what it means to lead and the role of sportsmanship in athletics and activities. We hope the student leaders who attend Captains’ Academy will take what they learned and support others in their school.”

Congratulations to Becky West for answering this week's "Where are we Wednesday?" challenge sponsored by Wiggy Wash.