TAMU-CC Athletes Volunteer to Read for Elementary Students


Photo contributed by Diego Johnson

Diego Johnson playing at the Chapman Field during the Fall 2021 Blue vs Green World Series.

As we approach this new year, Texas A&M University – Corpus Christi student athletes reflect on their efforts to bring joy and fun to elementary schools around the area in 2021. 

In 2021, student athletes had the opportunity to volunteer to play games or read to Elementary students in the area as part of community service, while the readings remained virtual and brief, this gave athletes the opportunity to connect with the youth of Corpus Christi and introduce them to the world of an athlete. 

TAMU-CC junior and student athlete, Diego Johnson, talked about his experience volunteering to a local Elementary school. “Reading to kids as an athlete really keeps me reminded that everything is done in this world for the kids,” Johnson said. “I love reading to them as much as they love me reading to them.” 

Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, these readings were held virtually. According to Johnson, it felt “very different” due to the children wearing their masks on call, not allowing him to see their full reactions.

Though not everything was virtual, with precautionary measures taken into place these athletes were also allowed to play a quick game for the children’s entertainment. After their game was over, the athletes were allowed to sign jerseys and in Johnson’s case, baseballs for the children. 

According to Johnson, while the 20-minute readings had to remain short due to both the children’s and athlete’s busy schedules, the best part of volunteering was when the children were given time after the readings and games, to ask the athletes questions about what it is like to be a student athlete at the university. 

“It’s cool to see how the kids will listen more to someone they look up to,” said Johnson. “Or where they want to be in future.” 

As we go into this new year with schools returning to in-person learning, student athletes may have the opportunity to visit these schools again to interact with these children and inspire them face to face.