Wednesday, May 9, 2007

JT's Blog - National Youth License Course in Philadelphia - May 9

JT's Blog will be a weekly addition to the US Youth Soccer Blog. John Thomas "JT" is the Assistant Director of Coaching Education for US Youth Soccer.

Recently, I assisted in teaching a National Youth License course, which was hosted by Starfinder Foundation in conjunction with the Eastern Pennsylvania Youth Soccer Association (EPYSA), a proud member of US Youth Soccer. About 60 coaches from inner-city Philadelphia and surrounding areas attended.

EPYSA coach Billy Tompkins delivered part of the youth module and Mike Barr the EPYSA State Director of Coaching also was in attendance and conducted several field sessions.

To kickoff what was a fantastic couple of days, I delivered a coaching clinic to Multi-Cultural United, a local Under-16 boys team. The Multi-Cultural team is a diverse group of inner-city youngsters of mostly African decent.

After the clinic, Tony Williams, President and Founder of the Starfinder Foundation invited every player, through a full-scholarship, to attend Starfinder’s Youth Leadership Camp and to become a part of the organization’s exciting and innovative vision.

The week-long program uses soccer to develop character and leadership skills. Participants can also receive coaching and referee certifications. One of Starfinder’s goals is to increase job opportunities by securing referee badges and coaching certifications.

These students will develop the attitudes, characteristics and leadership skills of the next generation of players/leaders living within inner-city Philadelphia.

The next morning, the coaching education got underway with the first 20 coaches working with the Philadelphia Soccer Club Under-6 boys team. That afternoon, 40 coaches who attended the Under-8/Under-10 youth course worked with the Anderson Monarchs, an African-American Girls Club, from South Philadelphia.

The event was a great success with a lot of positive feedback from the coaches involved in the sessions.

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