The NCAA match has an enduring affect on Indiana faculties and organizations

Posted: Apr 2, 2021 / 2:16 PM EDT
Updated: April 2, 2021 / 2:17 p.m. EDT

– We’re approaching the Final Four weekend of the NCAA men’s tournament.

This tournament is having an impact on basketball fans everywhere, but as the host there is some amazing outside of the tournament effort here in Indianapolis that will have a huge lasting impact. While the teams and fans head home, the March Madness influence will remain here in central .

“It’s a big difference,” said Zach Sigmund of the renovated basketball court and nearly 75 backpacks of school supplies and graduation products for the Indianapolis Boys and Girls Club.

You also get an updated library with new carpets and furniture. Anything is possible as the organization is a recipient of the NCAA Legacy Restoration Project.

“Every time you are offered an upgrade to your facility it affects the lives of the kids. They already love going to the gym. Now they are going to love getting to an even nicer gym,” added Sigmund added.

The effects can be felt from the gym to the classroom.

“It’s called the March Madness Skills Challenge,” said Molly Wright, senior director of youth programming at Indiana Corp. “It was a very difficult year in schools and it was very exciting for them to be able to connect with March Madness.” Teacher.”

Indiana Sports Corp. encourages fifth graders in not just Indiana but nine other states to focus on their language, social, and math skills.

“Teach the kids what the tournament is and what it means to have it in Indianapolis, and add a little basketball to it,” Wright said.

Students hear from college athletes, study skills and what it takes to reach that level. Students say they are inspired.

“Lots of great advice and tips from athletes and students who are able to do what they do,” said fifth grader Luke Morrison-Smith of Zionsville Middle School.

Fifth grader Teel Butts added, “I sent an email to Purdue and I thought it was kind of cool!”

The NCAA says it is determined to make its mark on the city and the next generation.

“Those conversations we had on this program gave us an opportunity to say, okay, the things we do actually matter to the future,” says Emily Smith, a teacher at Zionsville Middle School.

Wright added, “It’s more than just a game, it’s part of the legacy we leave here.”

Teachers and school districts are still allowed to register to take part in the March Madness Skills Challenge. It is available until June.

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