Professional Development

Wilmington Friends ‘player of the year’ gives Gatorade grant to Mill nonprofit Strive

Award-winning runner Connor Nisbet pays it forward.

Strive participants pose for a photo.

(Courtesy photo)

Connor Nisbet — Wilmington Friends junior and the state’s top cross-country runner this year — gave youth leadership sports program Strive a grant. It comes as part of the Gatorade Play it Forward initiative, where the drink company’s “players of the year” in various sports dole out funding to organizations of their choice.

Strive, a Delaware nonprofit based at The Mill, utilizes athletics to develop leadership skills in youth through nine-day sports challenges.

“We are so proud of Connor’s achievements in cross country and honored that he’s chosen to award the Gatorade grant to Strive,” said Andrea Valentine, Strive’s executive director. “To run at Connor’s level requires leadership and character traits like motivation and grit. It’s these kinds of competencies and skills that Strive works year-round to develop in student athletes, many of whom come from under-resourced communities. With a grant to Strive, Connor is truly paying it forward by ensuring other teens can experience the same level of success he has.”

There are five 2017–18 Delaware high school players of the year in total, including Caleb Matthews, a senior at Smyrna (basketball); Lydia Olivere, a senior a Padua (cross country); Emily Jarome, a senior at Padua (volleyball); and Will Knight, a senior at Smyrna (football).

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