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Student getting practice for career with kids

August 02, 2009|By DAN DEARTH

HANCOCK -- Stephen Weatherholt is spending much of his summer working with young people.

When Weatherholt, a 21-year-old Frostburg State University junior, isn't working as a mentor for after school-programs for Frostburg's youth, he's directing the Hancock Youth Camp -- a summer job he hopes will help prime him for a career as a health and physical education teacher.

"I thought it would be a good fit," said Weatherholt, a 2006 Hancock High School graduate. "It's so much fun getting paid and to hang out with the kids all day."

Weatherholt said he started working at the camp as a youth counselor last year.

"They're just kids throughout the community who are looking for things to do," he said. "There's not a lot to do in Hancock."

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Weatherholt said about 15 youngsters, who range in age from 6 to 12, participate in the camp. They engage in activities that range from sports to classes in tobacco awareness, he said. The children also watch movies and swim three days a week.

He said the most satisfying part of his job comes at the end of the day when children beg to come back.

Before he was named camp director, Weatherholt chaperoned 30 youngsters on a trip to New York City in January. On that trip, they toured the city and spent the night at the Cathedral of St. John the Divine.

Weatherholt, who earned several college scholarships and was captain of the Hancock High School basketball team, said he is enrolled in a five-year program at Frostburg State that will enable him to earn certifications to teach health and physical education in grades kindergarten through 12.

"I love to be active all the time," Weatherholt said. "(My education) will let me work with kids, which is something I like to do."

Weatherholt said he plans to graduate in the spring of 2011.

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