Five MHS students -- Devon Jackson, Karina Bursac, Hannah Flottmeyer, Gabby Pierson Mays, Reagan Thomas, along with athletic director Bob Joers, attended the 10th annual WIAA Sportsmanship Summit, sponsored by Rural Mutual Insurance, in Stevens Point on Wednesday, Dec. 12.
More than 725 participants on 122 teams representing and 106 member high schools attended the summit. Each school was represented by a team of students, school administrators, coaches, school board members and/or community leaders.
Joers said he selected the MHS students because of their involvement in Captains Club and-or because they are high-quality, high-character individuals. He said the summit reinforced much of the good work being done at MHS, but also allowed the student-athletes to learn more about the programs other schools are using and how they are dealing with sensitive issues.
"The summit was very valuable,'' Joers said. "Our students learned a lot. I know they are the type of people who when situations arise they deal with it right away.''
The mission of the WIAA Sportsmanship Summit was to strengthen the principles of sportsmanship by promoting teamwork through networking and the sharing of resources, and instilling the motivation to make a difference.
The summit featured two keynote addresses and three time slots for five different break-out sessions, which focused on the ideals of sportsmanship/citizenship. The morning keynote address was presented by Craig Hillier, author of Playing Beyond the Scoreboard. The afternoon keynote address was presented by Lance Allan, sports anchor at WTMJ-TV in Milwaukee.
Participants also attended three morning break-out sessions. The subjects for the five, 40-minute break-out presentations available during the three time slots were “The Coach and Participants Roles in Sportsmanship” by Mark Maas, veteran teacher and coach, and State track & field color commentator on the NFHS Network; “Obtaining Victory with Virtue” by Mark Horbinski of WON80 and a member of the WIAA Sportsmanship Committee; “Sportsmanship: The Official’s Perspective” by Thaddeaus Hilliard, veteran WIAA licensed official; “Peer Sportsmanship Leadership” by Athletic Directors Aaron May of Waunakee and Sportsmanship Committee member, and Eric Nee of Sun Prairie; and “Sportsmanship Roundtable Discussions” moderated by Amy Vesperman, superintendent at Plum City, and Jenny Bandow, athletic director at Luxemburg-Casco. They are also members of the WIAA Sportsmanship Committee.