Honoring Mia, winner of Latham’s Special Olympics Athlete of the Year Award

The Latham Hawks represent our Children’s Program at Special Olympics events throughout the year. Students attend regular practices, support their teammates, and play to the best of their ability.

At our 2022 Year-End Celebration, Monique Williams (Director of Health and Wellness) and Danny Anderson (Residential Activities Coordinator) announced that Mia was selected as Latham’s Special Olympics Athlete of the Year. Mia was invited to the stage amidst applause and her peers yelling her name. Monique and Danny shared this moving tribute with the audience of students, staff, Latham families, and special guests:

Since arriving at Latham, Mia has participated in soccer, flag football, basketball, bowling, and track & field. Mia is a quiet participant but exhibits everything you can imagine in an athlete. She is dedicated, compassionate, and her confidence has grown over the last year.

…Mia has never missed a practice for any sport she participated in during the 21-22 season. At practice and in games, she listens to the coaches’ guidance, takes what she learns, applies it, and sometimes tries to go above and beyond what is expected of her. She is patient with both her skills and the struggles that are presented to her.

…Mia is incredibly supportive of her peers, always cheering for them when they performed well and supporting them when they did not meet the Special Olympics standards… She is a role model to our younger athletes and helps her teammates out with anything she can.

…Over the past year, Mia has discovered new strengths and abilities and has shown an increase in confidence throughout the season. During the flag football season, we would see Mia almost nervous to take an opponent’s flag. After speaking with her it was discovered that she didn’t want to be rude or hurt anyone’s feelings. The coaches worked with her on her confidence and reinforced the rules of the game. By the end of not only the flag football season, but all of the seasons, she was playing more aggressively and stopping opponents in their tracks as well as being a force to reckon with on offense.

Congratulations, Mia!


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