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OWLS Academy | Chidera Earns Daniel Murphy Scholarship!

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For 29 years the Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund (DMSF) has provided four-year high school scholarships and educational support to economically disadvantaged Chicago high school students who demonstrate outstanding academic potential, leadership skills and strong character. We are excited that our very own Chidera Anyasor (St. Malachy ’19, OWLS Academy 23′) has earned a Murphy Scholarship.

Click for Chidera’s Full Success Story

OWLS Academy Success Story | Jillian Tolbert ’21

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“Being part of OWLS Lacrosse has taught me many lessons. The program has taught me to be open-minded and try new things. In the past I was a really shy person but OWLS helped me add authenticity to myself as a person, and ultimately I gained more confidence. I have always been serious with my academics but being involved with this organization keeps me motivated to maintain high academic standards. OWLS taught me how to be a real student-athlete!” -Jillian


OWLS Storyboard: MLK Day Tradition is Born

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This week the Academy program continued it’s college tour with a special MLK Day visit to our friends at Notre Dame. Students toured campus with members of the Black Student Association, watched the Men’s Lacrosse and Basketball teams practice, and connected with Notre Dame students in an MLK inspired dialogue!

OWLS kids from across the city spent the day with Domers from Notre Dame’s Black Student Association.

Lunch with Notre Dame BSA students…

Very cool to see Coach Brey do his thing first hand during the Men’s Basketball practice experience!

The fellas had a special visit to watch our partners on the Men’s Lacrosse team do their thing at the Loftus Center!

After their practice, the Lacrosse team joined us at the mesmerizing Arlotta Stadium facilities. Players broke into groups to talk about lax, life, and MLK Day! Here’s one of our Academy crease attackman Jaylen speaking with one of the nation’s best at the same position, Mikey Wynne!

OWLS Academy Fall ’17

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We are excited about the progress of our participants in the OWLS Academy program this fall. Academy pulls students from our OWLS inner-city school sites to provide exciting academic, enrichment, and lacrosse opportunities year-round.

September: OWLS Academy Box Training

Academy utilizes our outdoor box at Garfield Park for small group training. Box training provides all ability levels with a high repetition approach on passing, catching, spacing, and cutting.


September: Service-Learning Scholars

Notre Dame Men’s Lacrosse alum Liam O’Connor and Northwestern Women’s Lacrosse alum Nancy Dunbar lead our Saturday Scholarship Support Program. OWLS Service-Learning Scholars meet every other week to work on goal setting, local service projects, and selective enrollment school scholarships. OWLS Academy participants kicked the program off in September with a round-table discussion on community-building, then broke into groups for school clean-up, equipment inventory, and scholarship application work.


October: Glenbrook South Teambuilding Camp

In October we continued our annual tradition with Coach Jeffrey and the Glenbrook South Titans Lacrosse program. OWLS Academy students took a bus to the GBS campus for a series of team-building challenges that promote positive communication, problem-solving, and teamwork. Special thanks to our Titan family for the continued support (and big bag of 50 Chick Fila sandwiches for the ride home!).


October: Academy Tours Beloit College in Wisconsin!

Thank you Beloit College Men’s Lacrosse and Coach Rashad Devoe for hosting our student-athletes! We toured the campus, learned about real academic access opportunities through the Office of Diversity and Inclusion…and had a blast with Buc Nation in the athletic facilities! #GoBucs


October: Garfield Park Conservatory Trip (VIDEO)


November: Elmhurst College Visit and Live Practice with the Jays!

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The OWLS Academy College Tour continued with Elmhurst College Men’s Lacrosse! Special thanks Coach Morrell and Coach Rosiek for organizing and executing an incredibly impactful experience. Our student-athletes engaged in a comprehensive tour of campus, participated in a simulated practice, and took in a lecture on the nuts and bolts of the college recruiting process! #GoJays


November: Fall Finale at the Evanston Dome

Special thanks Evanston Youth Lacrosse Association for hosting the OWLS Academy “Fall Finale” at the Quad Sports Dome! We had an incredible turnout for “peace games” and community building…huge shoutout to the EYLA and ETHS Wildkit staff for leading the way!


OWLS Storyboard: Playing for Peace 2017

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Just as every kid is different, the OWLS “Experience” is multi faceted and dependent on the unique circumstances of our participants. Our new Academy program provides year-round participants with an intensive menu of options for higher level lacrosse training, scholarship access, academic enrichment, and opportunities to travel. Learn-to-Play and OWLS League introduces the game to boys and girls after-school while providing inner-city schools and park districts with a resource rooted in quality sports based youth development practices. One constant has been Playing for Peace. The sixth annual Playing for Peace took place last Friday, October 13th at Garfield Park Sports Fields.

The Playing for Peace Initiative with Notre Dame Men’s Lacrosse started as a very small profile get together with OWLS, and has grown into a multi-school 100+ participant event. The focus of “Playing for Peace” is to publicly display how the OWLS organization can help strengthen the many communities of Chicago through peaceful play. The day included stations led by OWLS staff, Under Armour, Parisi Speed School Chicago, Adventures Accessed, Era Sports and of course Notre Dame players/coaches. Students participated in team-building with police officers and military veterans, peace projects, lacrosse games, fastest shot, live music, BBQ, and closed with a friendly West Side vs South Side scrimmage…

The following photo storyboard outlines the day that was Playing for Peace 2017!