Enrollment and the level of excitement are not the only things up this year at HSRA. Now, at any time during the day, basketballs fly up in the air aimed toward the orange hoops in the new gymnasium.
Students and staff members alike have expressed pure joy over the new gymnasium recently opened at HSRA. It used to be that young people scurried in the doors of the school to just grab a breakfast first thing in the morning in preparation for the rest of their day. Now, many students rush into the doors each day to hit the gym where they find English teacher and assistant director of Student Engagement and Support, Dan Frey, leading them in an intense game of co-ed, five-on-five with eager, talented, and budding basketball stars.
HSRA students are not shy when asked what they think of the new gymnasium.
“People like to play ball,” says 20-year old HSRA student, Cameron. “They love to do that. People like to be dedicated to what they love to do.”
When asked why the gymnasium has been such a smash hit with the students, Cameron stated, “It motivates us first thing in the morning. It keeps our bodies up. It’s really nice they have a fitness class too. It keeps everybody healthy and muscled up.”
Tony Simmons, HSRA executive director, echoes the enthusiastic sentiments of the students.
“It is incredible to see how much the students have gravitated to our new gymnasium. We knew when we opened the gymnasium that it would be a huge success. But, I think even we were surprised to see how much the gym means to our students. What a great way for our staff to build even stronger relations with our students.”
Simmons stated that in addition to the new gymnasium being used for team sports and fitness classes, the space is also being used to host community events and year-round activities that support the development of the entire community.
Student Cameron says he plans on continuing to hit the gym on a daily basis.
“It’s another place where we get to play music. People get to have fun in a big room and practice our dance moves ahead of our Pick Me Up performances.”
With school administrators having big plans for the gymnasium and students having “big fun” in the new space, the gymnasium at HSRA will continue to reverberate like the sound of the perfect swish going through the hole of a bright, orange basketball hoop.