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Special Olympics awards Naz student a grant to promote inclusion on campus

Published April 08, 2022

It is important to make sure everybody gets treated the same — to show off everyone’s abilities and focus on what they can do as opposed to what they can’t do.” - Rachel Hance

Rachel Hance, president of Special Olympics Club@Naz and a junior communication sciences & disorders major, has been awarded a grant from Special Olympics to advance unified sports at Nazareth. Unified sports brings together Nazareth students and Special Olympics athletes to play together and celebrate abilities. 

The KPMG Youth Inclusion Grants are $500 awards given to youth leaders with and without intellectual disabilities. These grants require applicants to create a project which promotes inclusion in their school or community.

Hance plans to use the grant to expand Nazareth’s intramurals program on campus and promote inclusion. “Our intramurals league includes Special Olympics athletes from the community as well as Nazareth students. We are hoping to play soccer, basketball, bocce, and flag football.”

The grant will further the mission of the Golisano Training Center, “Wellness for All.” The Golisano Training Center at Nazareth College is the home to unified sports on campus and for nearly 3,000 local Special Olympic athletes. The 108,000-square-foot space strongly considered the needs of people with intellectual disabilities and Hance hopes to use the space to offer more options for unified intramural sports.

Many of the lessons from unified sports will help Hance in her future career as a speech pathologist. “I really want to help people be able to do as much as they can do. I hope to be involved with unified sports and Special Olympics for the rest of my life.”

Hance and the Special Olympics Club@Naz are holding unified basketball intramurals on three upcoming Thursday nights, April 14, 21, 28 from 8-9 p.m. in the Golisano Training Center.

For More Information

Julie Long | Senior News & PR Officer | jlong2@naz.edu | (585) 781-8186 (cell) | (585) 389-2456

Nazareth College is an inclusive community of inspired learners, educators, and changemakers who for nearly 100 years have been driven by a bold commitment to action, empathy, equity, and leading innovation for the common good. Impact experiences are at the heart of a Nazareth education, preparing each student to discover within themselves the potential to cultivate positive change in their life's work, in any career field, and in a world that is constantly evolving and infinitely interconnected.

Our broad academic offerings present a range of study options typical of big universities, yet achieved in our supportive campus culture. Nearly 2,100 undergrad and 600 graduate students enroll in degree and certificate programs and engage in collaborative, transformative learning experiences, preparing them for the professions and society of today and tomorrow. In a learning community that purposefully integrates liberal arts and professional programs, Nazareth graduates launch lifetimes of changemaking leadership in communities and workplaces near and far.

Hance and the Special Olympics Club@Naz are holding unified basketball intramurals on three upcoming Thursday nights, April 14, 21, 28 from 8-9 p.m. in the Golisano Training Center.