Student-athletes find a way to hold Lift For Life events in 2021
A year after seeing all but two Uplifting Athletes Lift For Life events canceled because of the COVID-19 pandemic, the student-athlete chapter leaders nationwide showed their passion for the Rare Disease Community by finding a way to bring back Lift For Life in 2021.
With everyone’s safety the top priority, all 21 Lift For Life events held over the last four months were private workouts.
“Lift For Life is such a special event for our chapters, so it was unfortunate last year when we had to put things on hold. Being able to bring it back this summer at the majority of our chapters and adding a few new schools and a new sport was huge,” Uplifting Athletes Chapter Success Manager Levi Norwood said. “Seeing so many student-athletes excited to use their platform to support the Rare Disease Community says a lot about the young men and women we work with”
Lift For Life is the signature fundraising event for college student-athletes that partner with Uplifting Athletes to use their platform to inspire the Rare Disease Community with hope through the power of sport.
Saint Francis kicked off Life For Life this year on April 24th and Marist will bring down the curtain for the 2021 events on August 25th. In between we saw Northwestern, Valdosta State, Illinois, Eastern Illinois, Lehigh, Kent State, Penn State, Notre Dame, Syracuse, Charleston Southern, Clemson, Florida Atlantic, Georgia Tech, Baylor, NC State, Maryland, Western Michigan and Fordham hold Lift For Life’s.
Valdosta State, Charleston Southern and Florida Atlantic are prospective chapters that held Lift For Life events in 2021. Each of these chapter prospects is under the leadership of a transfer who came from a school with an Uplifting Athletes chapter fueled with a desire to support the Rare Disease Community at their new school.
Two of them - Antwan Dixon (Kent State to Valdosta State) and Cooper Dawson (Syracuse to Charleston Southern) - were chapter leaders at their previous schools. Chaz Neal (Florida State to Florida Atlantic) participated in Lift For Life at Florida State and has assumed a leadership role at his new school.
In addition to prospective chapters, Lift For Life 2021 also carved out a new pathway in the history of Uplifting Athletes. The Eastern Illinois women’s soccer team, inspired by the passion for the cause displayed by the football program, expanded the Lift For Life boundaries beyond college football and into an additional student-athlete sports program on campus for the first time by holding their own Lift For Life on August 3rd.
“This is exciting ... to see Uplifting Athletes grow into another sports program outside of football,” Norwood said. “Kenzie (Balcerak) and some of her teammates joined us at our Leadership Development Conference in January and have been so engaged with how they can use their platform to support the Rare Disease Community.
“It’s an honor to have the EIU women’s soccer team pioneer the expansion of Lift For Life to include additional student-athlete programs to our network of rare disease advocates.”