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Springfield College to Welcome Courts for Kids President Derek Nesland on Jan. 28

SPRINGFIELD — Springfield College will welcome Courts for Kids President Derek Nesland to the campus on Tuesday, Jan. 28 at 7:30 p.m. in the Fuller Arts Center. Nesland’s presentation, titled “Who Says There’s No Traveling in Basketball? Community Development Through Court Building Around the Globe,” will highlight the service-to-humanity mission provided by Courts for Kids, a nonprofit 501(c)(3) organization that helps build multi-sport courts in economically disadvantaged areas throughout the world. Nesland’s presentation is part of the 2019-20 Humanics Triathlon project led by Distinguished Springfield Professor of Humanics Judy Van Raalte.

Following an impressive high-school and collegiate basketball career, including being named an Academic All-American at Portland State University, Nesland played professional basketball in 14 countries around the world. After a random e-mail from the Philippines expressing a need for a basketball court caught his attention, Nesland gathered a group of volunteers, and Courts for Kids was born.

In January 2012, a group of Springfield College students, led by Van Raalte, joined Courts for Kids and traveled to northern Uganda to build basketball courts at Lira Integrated Schools. To date, Courts for Kids has completed more than 190 multi-use athletic-court-building projects in 30 countries, partnering with more than 3,000 participants in the U.S.

Since 1967, Springfield College annually has appointed a Distinguished Springfield Professor of Humanics to continue the preservation of Springfield College’s guiding philosophy and to examine its implications of pedagogy, curriculum, management, recruitment, campus life, and community impact.

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