On a typical Thursday night at WCU, most students spend time with their fellow classmates after a long, hard week of homework, studying and exams. However, senior Andrew Silverman had a bigger plan in sight for this Thursday night. He wanted the student body to get together in Sykes Student Union, eat some pizza, and listen to some of the most talented local bands in Pennsylvania – all to benefit something that has had a huge impact on his life.
After being a student in Dr. Monica Lepore’s Adapted Physical Education class, Silverman learned about Camp Abilities, a developmental sports camp for children, ages 7-16, that are blind or visually impaired.
Recognizing Dr. Lepore’s world-renowned work with children with disabilities and the impact she had on them, he was influenced to volunteer last summer at the Arizona Camp Abilities. Silverman said that the experience had “changed his life.”
Camp Abilities began in Brockport, N.Y. but has spread to other locations around the United States and the world, such as Arizona, Puerto Rico and Alaska. Dr. Lepore founded the Camp Abilities in Pennsylvania. This year’s Camp Abilities will be held here at West Chester University this May during Memorial Day weekend.
“Dr. Lepore has a heart of gold and I wanted to help her because she’s been such a positive influence on kids and students, including myself,” Silverman said proudly.
He is extremely confident that the benefit concert will be a huge success, especially with all of the support that he has received during the organization process.
Silverman immediately enlisted the help of Phi Epsilon Kappa, the honors fraternity for students majoring in Kinesiology, and they willingly jumped at the opportunity to support such a great cause.
Phi Epsilon Kappa’s president, Donna Dollard, and Sergeant at Arms, Leah Posocco, are both on the volunteer administrative staff of Camp Abilities West Chester and have been actively involved in all facets of the concert planning process.
Director of Sykes Student Union and head of Sykes After Dark, Dave Timmann, a leading sponsor of the event, has shown Silverman continuous support during the past few weeks as well.
“He really guided me through the whole process. Any resources or extra help that I needed was never an issue. Dave really cares about this cause and the WCU student body,” Silverman noted.
Silverman’s goal for this Thursday night’s Camp Abilities Benefit Concert is to mainly, “educate the public and shed a different light on kids who are blind or visually impaired.”
He undoubtedly wanted to help Dr. Lepore’s organization and he felt he could combine his love for music and working with kids with disabilities into one event that will bring the West Chester University community together to have some fun and help this significant program.
The Camp Abilities Benefit Concert 2007 will be held this Thursday, Mar. 1 from 7:00-11:00 p.m. in the Sykes Student Union Ballrooms. The concert will feature some of the best rock, punk, ska, and alternative local bands from around the Pennsylvania area.
Bands listed to perform are Overise, Ritter, Last Martyrs of a Lost Cause, The Arrangement and The Drafts. Pierre Robert from Philadelphia’s 93.3 WMMR station will be hosting the event. There will be free pizza and drinks. There is a $5 donation at the door and all proceeds will go to the Camp Abilities program. This event is sponsored by Phi Epsilon Kappa and Sykes After Dark.