UMass Lowell’s ‘Fab 40’ Camp at Boys & Girls Club Emphasizes Hope and Opportunity
For Immediate Release
May 30, 2012
Courtesy of the UMass Lowell Athletics Communications Staff
Lowell, Mass. – For the 40 middle school-aged youngsters who earned admission, the Fab 40 Basketball Camp at the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Lowell last week was a gateway of sorts to using sports and academics to open new doors.
UMass Lowell held its first-ever and – and projected annual – Fab 40 Basketball Camp last week, a free, four-day camp at the Boys & Girls Club, overseen by head men's basketball coach Greg Herenda, pictured, his staff and several players.
The 40 participants at the free, four-day Camp qualified for admission on three criteria: achieving in school, investing in their communities and having a love of basketball. The Camp is also consistent with Herenda's coaching blueprint: commit, persevere, achieve.
"This was an opportunity our teens wouldn't have without the commitment of Coach Herenda and his team," said Joe Hungler, Executive Director of the Boys & Girls Club. "To learn from a college coach and hear from athletes who have taken the path our teens want to follow is very powerful.
"The big thing for our kids was seeing what it took to get there," Hungler added. "We wanted them to understand that just because they have challenges around them, there is opportunity as well. The club is a lot about hope and opportunity and this camp is about pushing that message home."
Members of the camp staff included Herenda and his coaching staff of Associate Head Coach Marc Kuntz and assistants Mike Papale andSouleymane Wane. Junior Matt Welch, a Lowell native, and sophomore Antonio Bivins also served as instructors while women's assistant Erica Anderson and sophomore Danielle DePierro each volunteered a day.
Guest speakers included UMass Lowell head women's basketball coach Sarah Behn, a former star at Boston College; softball coach Sean Cotter and Director of Athletics Dana Skinner, a former Celtics draft pick.
"The Fab 40 Camp is a great collaborative effort that will bring the kids at the Club closer to our program and University and vice versa," Herenda said. "At the end of the day it's about the kids. Forty young boys and girls will have a chance to have fun playing basketball and reach for their dreams."
The Camp coincided with MCAS week and was held from went from 5:00 to 8:30 Monday through Thursday. "We planned this week so that they wouldn't have a lot of homework," Hungler said.
Plans for a 2013 camp are already in the making.