JOHNSON CITY, Tenn. (Dec. 12, 2007) - For the past two months the ETSU softball team has spent its time giving back to the community and growing closer by helping out at the Salvation Army and Dawn of Hope each Monday afternoon. Now a few members of the softball team look back and share what they learned while helping out in the community.
"The community service efforts made us realize how fortunate we are to have our health and appreciate life in general," said sophomore catcher Trisha Massenzo. "This effort helped bring our team closer, because we had to function and communicate as a whole while giving back to those in need. It was a good feeling to give back to the community and it was a special moment when we saw the expressions on each of their faces after helping them."
During its time at the Salvation Army, the ETSU softball team would serve food to homeless people, as well as spend time with children, helping them with their homework and entertaining them with games.
At the Dawn of Hope, which is a non-profit agency designated to provide a wide array of service to mentally challenged and other developmentally disabled persons, the Lady Bucs spent the afternoons completing an assortment of projects. During their visits, the players assisted in designing arts and crafts for the holidays. Though the team was busy making crafts and helping with other activities, the most important aspect was the friendships they created and smiles brought to the people's faces.
"The community service we took part in was very rewarding experience," said ETSU freshman Kaela Jackson. "Our team has grown closer while helping the less fortunate, and it has made us realize how truly blessed we are. It was a great opportunity in which we had fun and learned a lot about the importance of compassion."
Taking time away from the field and helping out in the community is something head ETSU softball coach Andrea Mangrum stresses to her players and in return her team understands the importance.
"I feel privileged to see what we did as team these past two months," commented senior second baseman Briana Knight. "It was a great way to get together and provide a positive experience to those in need as well as create a special bond with each person we met. This was also a way to give back to the community after they support us each season."
The ETSU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics takes pride in its community service activities and strives for 100 percent participation from its student-athletes, coaches and administrators throughout the year.
For more information on Buccaneer softball and the ETSU Department of Intercollegiate Athletics community service efforts visit