April 4, 2014
By Elliott Sprecher
Wisconsin Men’s Tennis
MADISON, Wis. -- While there are an astounding number of experiences to be gleaned from being a student-athlete at UW-Madison, there are few I have found as rewarding as making a difference in the surrounding community. Our men’s tennis team has had the opportunity to visit a number of schools, shelters and retirement homes in the past few months to contribute to their ongoing efforts, and it has been a welcomed break from the grind of classes and practice to head off-campus and see a completely different perspective.
“It’s good to see a different side of things,” freshman John Zordani said. “We go out and we get to help with something that might impact somebody’s life, and that’s just a really cool feeling. I’d say it helps keep us more centered for sure.”
More than anything, I believe the community service outings have been key in keeping us grounded during our season. It can sometimes be all too easy to get caught up in our day-to-day activities and pressures and forget that the world is far larger than the bubble we’re living in. These moments have been some of our team’s most memorable bonding experiences, bringing us closer as a whole. Wisconsin head coach Greg Van Emburgh has made a special commitment this year to ensure community service is one of our top priorities.
“I think giving back to the community is very important, and being able to have the men’s tennis student-athletes show their awareness and appreciation is a very important part of our program,” Van Emburgh said. “I know firsthand they’ve enjoyed it and will continue to be part of the outreach and community service events.”
It is worth noting that many of the teams at UW-Madison participate in community service events like these on a regular basis. It is a proud ongoing tradition at Wisconsin, and an underrated one at that. Few people are aware of the hard work and hundreds of hours that our student-athletes are putting towards the community each month. I speak for the whole men’s tennis team in saying that we are honored to be a part of it. As long as we can keep inspiring people and making an impact through our actions, we don’t plan on stopping anytime soon.