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SAAC and CEC Collaborates with Lawrence County Special Olympics

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Posted on Thursday, April 6, 2017

Westminster College student athletes and the Council for Exceptional Children (CEC) collaborated with the Lawrence County Special Olympics to host the Lawrence County Basketball Special Olympics. The Olympic games took place in the Memorial Fieldhouse on Saturday, March 25, 2017. Olympians from Crawford, Beaver, Washington, Westmoreland, Allegheny and Butler counties competed this year.

“Saturday was a tremendous day,” says Jane Dean, adjunct education faculty at Westminster College. "It was a time for our Westminster students to connect with the Special Olympians and their families and friends.  They were able to see the Olympians desire to compete and their positive spirits.  It was a day filled with energy, excitement and caring."

Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC) reps Shane Wilson (men’s golf) and Gabriella Tissue (women’s soccer), coincidently education majors, were the primary Westminster organizers and the liaisons working with Lawrence County Special Olympics this year. Over past years, SAAC student-athletes along with some of their teammates volunteered to operate the tournament with the organizers of the Lawrence County Special Olympics.

“In recent years, Jane Dean and CEC members got involved and really helped take the tournament to a higher new level,” said Jim Dafler, director of athletics at Westminster College and SAAC adviser.

“The purpose of the partnership is to enhance the lives of Division III student-athletes and Special Olympics athletes through a mutual learning experience; provide a platform for recognition of Special Olympics athletes and Division III student-athletes within their communities; and raise awareness of Special Olympics, its programs and services,” added Dafler.

For more information, contact Tom Fields at or 724-946-7190.