Hundreds of East Texas kids ranging from football players to volleyball players, who want to improve their athletic ability, will be on the TJC campus this summer.
For years, TJC has sponsored numerous sports camps exposing children to the facilities, coaches, and players at TJC.
“(Summer camps) introduce the college atmosphere to kids who are going to eventually be a potential, recruitable student to TJC,” said Dr. Tim Drain, TJC Athletic Director.
Kids will have a chance to work with the student athletes as well while being at camp. Camps are geared toward all kids from beginners to the more experienced.
For example, in the football camp directed by TJC Head Football Coach Danny Palmer, kids will work on passing, punting, kicking and other skills at all positions.
Kids will be able to use state-of-the-art weight-training and conditioning equipment and have complete access to field house facilities and Pat Hartley Field.
“Some of our summer camps utilize our student athletes, as well as former student athletes. I found from a personal experience as well that if you get somebody teaching a sport it actually improves your sport,” said Drain.
Student athletes being a part of the summer camps is not only a cool experience for the kids, but also for the student athletes themselves.
“We like student athletes involved for a various amount of reasons. I think it makes them better, I think it helps them understand their role in the sport, I think its good for the community, and I think its good for them as well because it keeps them around the sport.
“Sometimes it’s good to remember why you play the sport, you get to see that in camps especially,” said Drain.
TJC Tennis player, James Martell, loves to help out with summer camps and work with kids.
“We do host tennis camps at TJC during the summer, which I help out with. The first sessions are younger kids and the second sessions are for varsity kids,” said Martell.
Not all sports at TJC have specific training in the summer, so this gives the athletes a chance to keep playing the sports and their skills up.
“We are on our own in the summer, so no extra workouts. It’s up to us to stay in tennis shape,” said Martell.
“My typical summer is mainly staying in shape and keeping my game up, and I usually play a couple of tournaments to stay competitive and I help out with the summer camps here,” Martell added.
Along with offering a tennis summer camp, TJC offers football, baseball, basketball, tennis, soccer, softball and volleyball. Aside from the athletic camps, there is also an array of activity camps held for kids on campus as well.
Summer athletic camps are held from early June till the end of July. Most camps are held on the TJC campus, with a few being elsewhere.