This fall, DC SCORES alum and a junior at School Without Walls Delmar T. has been interning at our office twice a week. Recently, he took a few minutes out of his busy day to speak about his experience both as a DC SCORES participant and as an alum.
When were you involved with DC SCORES?
As an eighth-grader at Oyster-Adams the spring season.
Why did you join in the spring season?
Well, I wanted a soccer team. That was the main thing, to be honest.
Before that point, tell me about your soccer experience.
I’ve always played a lot, but I wasn’t going to do travel team or something that was super expensive.
Tell me about the experience of just playing on that team.
Obviously, it was great. It was like a high school soccer team. You know, but for middle schools — the idea of playing for your school and having all your friends on it, going on a bus to the games.
Was there a great sense of school pride that came from the whole experience?
First of all, you had the jersey with your name on it, the color — ours was yellow — and then you’re going and playing against other middle schools and it’s just like a high school or a college, like the pros do — you know, Barcelona vs. Real Madrid, or Oyster-Adams vs. Lincoln. And then you have the tournament with the finals and everything.
It’s all a big deal.
What was it like playing against so many schools that Oyster-Adams was close to?
It was really interesting because I got to know them (the kids) a lot better, but I first met them through DC SCORES. … Now I play with a lot of them who I first met through DC SCORES on teams outside of school.
Tell me about why you wanted to stay involved with DC SCORES even after you were out of the regular program.
Well, first of all, I like soccer and I benefit from DC SCORES. … It’s good to give back. And everyone here’s really nice. It just seemed like a good place to do community service and help out.
This fall you’ve been helping out at the office. Did you get involved with us right away when you started at School Without Walls? How did you kind of connect back with us after Oyster-Adams?
I originally started going to Oyster-Adams and I was an assistant coach there. … And then they had the alumni (group), and I was a part of that … that’s when DC SCORES got more organized for alumni outreach, so then I came to the Jamboree! (to volunteer) and I helped out with the Poetry Slam! for I think the past two years. And now I’m here in the office twice a week.
What was it like being a coach at Oyster-Adams as opposed to being on the team?
I felt like a big boy (laughing). It was nice because actually I was only a year older than the kids there. It’s different having to organize kids and stuff.
What’s the experience of kind of giving back to the program and helping out at these events and seeing the younger kids thriving — what’s it mean to you?
First of all, I’ve really seen a bigger part of DC SCORES. Since I only did it for a season (at Oyster-Adams), I only saw the middle school. I don’t think I understood how big DC SCORES was. And now coming into the office and helping out a lot more, I see how much work gets put into DC SCORES obviously.
Overall, what’s your experience been like this fall helping out in the office and seeing the ins and outs of the program?
I mean, it’s been really good. First of all, I enjoy giving back what I received. But then also just seeing these different aspects of it — doing paperwork, doing TB forms, tax forms, yeah.
What are your future plans?
Go to college. Get an education.
Are there certain schools you’re looking at?
In the Northeast or Canada.
Do you still play on a soccer team?
I play for the School Without Walls high school team and then I play indoor soccer with the school.
Are there any other extracurriculars you’re involved with at school?
Yeah, Current Events Club … ping pong (club) … Global Issues Network … and ultimate frisbee.
Who’s your favorite athlete?
Soccer, probably Messi. It’s probably a common choice but, you know, he’s a good player.
Favorite musician or poet?
No way I could choose (a musician) … if you could say Dr. Seuss, just because that was my childhood. You know, all those childhood books.
Obviously, I like pizza, lasagna and pasta — your Italian American staples. Hamburgers, obviously tacos, burritos, chimichangas.
DC SCORES needs your help to serve more students in the District deserving of a soccer and poetry team. Please consider Giving the Gift of a Team through our end-of-year campaign before Dec. 31.