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Monday, March 5, 2012

With new season looming, a quick look back at DC SCORES' history

Wow, how time flies.

Just like that, it’s early March and another DC SCORES season is just one week away. Next Monday, over 800 students representing 27 schools throughout the District will gather after the school day ends to begin plotting service-learning projects to better their respective communities and practicing for that first soccer game day at the end of the month.

On Saturday, DC SCORES coaches, or the ‘SCORES Corps,’ sacrificed sleeping in to gather at Brightwood Education Campus for the Coaches Kickoff event to begin planning for the season.

DC SCORES’ 18th spring season.

Before we get caught up in the excitement of this spring, though, let’s take a quick look back at the past 18-plus years and the milestones that have allowed us to become the District’s largest after-school provider (and growing).

Here’s a basic DC SCORES timeline:

1994 — Teach for America’s Julie Kennedy starts DC SCORES at Marie Reed Learning Center (now Marie Reed Elementary School).

1998 — DC SCORES holds the first Poetry Slam!.

1999 — America SCORES, the national program, is formed and is located in DC until 2003-04.

2001 — Program Director Cory Chimka begins as a coach at Tubman Elementary School. Almost every full-time staff member first got involved with the program through volunteering or helping out in some capacity.

2003 — The first Sharks vs. Suits Shootout, now the DC SCORES Cup, charity soccer tournament is held.

2006 — A year of transition: Executive Director Amy Nakamoto, Senior Program Director Katrina Hochstetler and Athletic Director Kenny Owens are hired.

2006 (continued) — Growth! With expansion occurring, the Poetry Slam! becomes a two-night event.

2007 — DC SCORES’ middle school program — now in seven schools — begins in earnest and the first America SCORES National Poetry SLAM! is held in New York. Each year, a pair of outstanding poet-athletes gets to spend a week and perform on stage at the SLAM!.

2007 — DC SCORES holds the first Capital Cup middle school soccer championship, now a staple of the fall season.

2010 — The first Inspired Art Gala fundraiser is held at the Corcoran Gallery of Art and receives rave reviews. This year, the third Gala is moving to the Carnegie Institution of Washington.

2011 — DC SCORES holds the largest Poetry Slam! ever, with nearly 1,000 in attendance during the two-night event held at Columbia Heights Education Campus and the refurbished H.D. Woodson High School.

2012 — Serving over 800 students at 27 schools in six of the District’s eight wards, DC SCORES is now the largest and most widespread after-school provider in the city. America SCORES, meanwhile, has 13 affiliates nationwide in 15 cities.

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