PREPARING STUDENTS FOR LIFE
Girls on the Run program helps build
confidence, foster friendships at
University Avenue Elementary School
Fifth-grade student Lily Thai never thought she
could become a runner. And she certainly never
thought she would be able to run as fast as — or
even faster than — the boys in her class.
Lewis serves as head coach along with four other
teachers who volunteer as coaches. The program
requires a minimum of eight girls to sign up.
“We were a little nervous we wouldn’t even get
eight, but we ended up getting the maximum of 20,
plus we have a waiting list. So it really exceeded our
expectations,” she said. “It was pretty amazing.”
Jewel Ellis, a fifth grader at University Avenue, said
she learned about the program at the school’s open
house and thought it would be a fun activity for her
and her friends, and her mom agreed to be her running buddy during the 5K.
Ellis likes that it’s a girls-only group because it feels
supportive, she said. “It makes me more confident. If
it’s just girls, we’ll al