August 8, 2016
Alumni Nationals Brings Together Over 75 Alumni From 6 Programs
Over the weekend of August 5-7, 77 urban squash alumni gathered together at Harvard University for the Urban Squash Alumni Nationals, a team tournament where college students and graduates of different member programs play as teammates. Alumni came from MetroSquash in Chicago, SquashSmarts in Philadelphia, StreetSquash in Harlem, CitySquash in the Bronx, Squash Haven in New Haven, and SquashBusters in Boston.
Each year during the tournament, NUSEA announces the winner of the Alumni Achievement Award which recognizes one alumna or alumnus who has demonstrated remarkable academic and professional success. Recipients are recognized for their strong leadership and personal integrity along with a record of continued support and connection to their member program. This year’s winner was Jose Alvarez, a graduate of the first CitySquash class in 2009 and Hobart William Smith in 2013, where he played on the varsity squash team. Alvarez currently teaches fourth grade math at Harlem Children’s Zone Promise Academy, prior to which he served a year at CityYear and earned a KIPP Fellowship.
Alongside the tournament, various social and personal development events provided opportunities for alumni to learn from professionals and each other. Friday evening included a Welcome Dinner and hit-around for alumni to prepare for the weekend competition, catch up, and form new friendships. On Saturday, Citizens Bank representatives led a Student Loan Counseling session to equip alumni with tools for their personal finances. In breakout sessions that same evening, students shared information and advice with one another on graduate school admissions and campus activism opportunities.
Saturday evening also featured the first meeting of the NUSEA Alumni Committee, which was formed to promote a sense of community among alumni. Led by Monete Johnson, SquashBusters ‘07, and Tempest Bowden, SquashSmarts ‘08, the Committee will be composed of alumni representatives from each member program and will focus on events, alumni outreach and service. Throughout the weekend, alumni enjoyed getting back on court, engaging in meaningful conversations, and reconnecting with their peers.
See photos of the event on our SmugMug account.
Winners of Alumni Nationals
Divine, StreetSquash ’14
Carmelo Reyes, Squash Haven ’15
Alija Hogans, CitySquash ’11
Tempest Bowden, SquashSmarts ’08
Losangela Batista, SquashBusters ’14
Yassir Jackson, SquashSmarts ’15
Gopal Mondol, SquashSmarts ’14
Yamiles Urena, SquashBusters ’14
Eliza Melendez, SquashBusters ’05