March 13, 2014
MADISON, Wis. -- Kids involved with Toki Middle School’s Juventude program got a little extra after-school treat last Thursday when three players from the Wisconsin men’s soccer team came to talk about life as a student-athlete.
On Feb. 6, soccer players Nick Janus, Max Jentsch and Trevor Wheeler shared their experience of what it takes to play collegiate soccer.
“We talked to the kids about how we got to where we are today and how academics played such an important role in getting us to UW,” Janus said.
The Juventude Program is a partnership between the Madison Metropolitan School District and Centro Hispano that helps give kids guidance on future career options and college preparation. Many of the students are big UW soccer fans and took a lot away from the message that the Badgers shared, including the importance of academics.
“They talked a lot about how grateful they were to have tutors and how the kids should take advantage of tutors whenever they can,” said Kathryn Wundrow, coordinator of the event.
The middle school students had great questions for the student-athletes, like what they can start doing now to accomplish their goals of going to college. Each student also got one-on-one time with the players to practice their interview skills.
“We had a really great time and we learned a lot from the visit,” Wundrow said.
For Jentsch, Janus and Wheeler, there’s nothing more rewarding than being able to share their experiences with Madison youth.
“I personally like to work with kids because every kid has so much potential for their future,” Janus said. “They’re at a crucial age where they need the most guidance and hopefully we gave them that guidance for their future.”