Outreach Team: Laurel O'Brien (Lead), Makenna Calbert (AAA Coordinator), Alyssa Pearson (AAA Coordinator), Amelia Ryan (Recruitment Coordinator / FLEDGE Coordinator), Quinn Sockman (Ambassador to Admin) Sports are an outlet for many students to enjoy during their high school career, and they can also lead to numerous opportunities outside of the classroom. However, it is often forgotten the amount of work it takes to balance being a student and an athlete. Coming from high school athletes’ perspectives, time management is a challenge. With daily practices, workouts, and trainings, it is hard to find time in our schedules for studying and preparing for our academic world. After seeing this re-occurring issue throughout Etowah High School, the Etowah East WING tutoring center concluded that a program needed to be started to aid our athletes. This school year, 2021, we began the AAA program which stands for Aiding Athletes in Academics. This is a workshop-based tutoring session on Tuesday mornings (7:30), held in the Etowah East WING tutoring center, that is targeted towards athletes within the Etowah student body. Coaches can also sign their team up to come to the workshop-based sessions. The AAA program gives student athletes the opportunity to excel academically in a convenient and comfortable environment. This is perfect for athletes who might be struggling in classes or those who are aiming to go to college. The WING is an immersive community that is perfect to aid athletes in their academics, so they become well-rounded students. Athletics can be a significant influence in an individual’s high school career. A member of Outreach Team in the East WING, Alyssa Pearson, shared her story: “I have played varsity soccer for four years and have large goals of wanting to play in the collegiate league. Although soccer has played a meaningful part in my life for thirteen years, my academic career was always a priority. My parents drilled the saying “grades come first” constantly, promoting the importance of how academics are a necessity for everyone’s future. Student athletes tend to have a busier schedule consisting of practices, games and individual training, resulting in limited time for academic focus. The Aiding Athletes in Academics (AAA) program has the goal to work around these schedules and intentionally give students the opportunity to keep their academic career a priority. Thus far, I have completed five AP classes while playing travel and high school soccer, and, by the time I graduate, would have completed ten AP classes. My life is an example of how the AAA program can help athletes reach their highest athletic and academic level. Finding a balance between academic rigor and sports is something that AAA will help individuals improve.” Another member of the outreach team, Makenna Calbert, also shared her story: “As both an athlete doing track and cross country as well as an academic student, I know how hard balancing both the academic and athletic life is. Keeping up with academics while also trying to get better athletically is hard. Tutoring can help close these gaps. Tutoring plays a huge role in helping aid academics and AAA provides for this. The AAA program works around the athletes' practice time to make sure they get their study time in. Such as by having group tutoring sessions in the morning, since most practice times are in the afternoon. This especially helps when an athlete applies for college because both academics and athletics play a role for college recruiting.” Workshop based tutoring that is specifically designed for athletes destigmatizes any ideas that they might feel about coming in to get extra help. Additionally, our athletes can now balance their schedules in a more timely manner as the WING caters to their needs. The WING has had over 12,000 tutoring appointments in previous years and aims to reach a goal of 5,000 tutoring appointments this year. We are here to help your student athletes do the best they can in all of their classes. Speak with your athletes' coaches or visit www.etowaheastwing.com to sign up using the AAA button on the homepage.