Monday, August 22, 2016

Camp Week 2!

While many people are just focusing on one thing, our players continue to be renaissance men who are both focused on Football, Academic Development, Community Service/Engagement, and growing in general. We have been VERY busy during the first 10 days of camp!

Here are some updates:

On Monday of last week, for the second year in a row, the guys trained with the HEROES of Ruck Endure. Being lead in physical training, team building, and other activities by Navy Seals continues to help the brotherhood of our program grow. Here is a short video displaying some of the activities!

Lake Forest College Football from Derek H. & David M. on Vimeo.

On Thursday, the guys participated in the annual Twitter Scavenger Hunt (#TheHunt) after dinner at local restaurants (no chains) the boys navigated Lake County to fulfill the requirements for the event. Here are some of the highlights:

It was a great evening out and about for out guys-- their creativity was spectacular.

On Monday evening last week, the boys did a great shift at Feed My Starving Children, a charitable organization in Libertyville that has a strong connection with the LFC Community.

Here is a brief video and some pictures:

On Friday, despite the threat (and eventual arrival) of Thunder and Lightning, the Foresters helped with Freshman move-in day. This assistance helped get all incoming students into their dorms with a helping and caring friend. Proud of our guys, they definitely made a great first impression!

Just in case you forgot what it was like when you moved your son in-- here is a video to remind you!

Most guys had the true highlight of their camp this morning when Ruben returned to the cafeteria and opened his world famous "Omelette station."

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

2016 Football Camp-- First 5 Days-- the Difference is on Display!

What makes the football program at Lake Forest College different than many others around the country?

Look at the first five days of our training camp. At many institutions the football takes the 100% priority and nothing else matters during training camp.

At Lake Forest, we take a balanced approach, and it is not just lip service. By no means does this mean we take football less serious, it just means that we understand the need for our players to be able to balance all parts of their life together. Why should we discourage this for the duration of our preseason training camp.

Beyond the easing into the team on the first day with a family Pig Roast, we spent time just getting to know each other the first day. No playbooks were issued, we focused on the "Jimmy's and Joe's" not the "X's and O's."

Once we got into the first day of work, we jumped in with both feet, but not until after we made sure that we took precautions to be able to best evaluate the health of our players. Concussion screenings, orthopedic screenings, etc. these are just the baselines, we make sure that the protocols for injuries, treatment, and therapy are completely understood. We practiced for the first time, conditioned, and got ourselves ready.

During the first five days, we saw our team work with the Navy Seals in the early mornings for some team building, have a community service packing food at Feed My Starving Children, have a Yoga and a Mobility Session to recover from the training, had a Cookout with several of our Gridiron Gang Parents, and have our first Life Skill Development Sessions.

In the LSD Sessions, a new program this year that replaced our Winners Manual Series, we have invited experts in different fields to meet with our players about topics specific to their class in school. We are fortunate to be associated with so many great people. Without giving away our secrets, here are the topics that were covered on the first Tuesday this year.

Senior Program: Financial Literacy and Preparedness- Rod Pompey, Primerica Inc, and Parent of RJ Pompey '17
Junior Program: Career Networking Skills- Joe Chmura, Career Advancement Center, Former VP of HR for Baxter Pharm.
Sophomore Program: Self Reliance vs. Selfishness in Performance- Dr. Jennifer Fast, Director of the LFC Counseling Center
Freshman Program: 1st Steps of Academic Success at LFC- Dr. Dawn Abt-Perkins and Julia Berkowitz. Directors of the Writing Center and Quantitative Resource Center

We will be having several more classed during camp and throughout the school year. The response to these programs has been outstanding.

Most importantly, we get to play football, but we make sure that we keep our commitment to the Liberal Arts, and total growth at the center of our approach to the "development of college football players."

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

5 More Tips For First Time Forester Families!

Five More Tips For First Time Forester Parents:

1. Can my son have a microwave/refrigerator/ other appliances?

Your son can have a refrigerator. However, no other appliances are allowed in the dormitories. The only acceptable "microwave" appliance must be a micro fridge which can be found on our school website. You may want to check over the "what to bring/what not to bring" list that the College provides here: WHAT TO BRING TO LFC

The Coach Cat Top 5 Items to Bring:
1. A Door Stop-- lots of dorm life happens in the hallways, breezeways, etc. Have a "clean way" to keep your door open so people don't knock over the awkwardly placed garbage can.

2. Hand Sanitizer/Disinfectant wipes-- have in your dorm room. College campuses are breeding grounds for "sick" things. Wiping off video game controllers, etc are important.

3. A planner. If you aren't good about putting appointments into your phone yet, you will be. Until then, have a planner you can write on. Sometimes the "visual" of how busy your week or day is, or isn't, will help you with time management.

4. Paper Towels -- spills will happen!

5. Tech equipment-- bare minimums-- have your phone in a safe case. College students drop, knock off, and find other ways to destroy phones no matter how careful they are. Bring extra charging cords, and PLEASE back up your phone on your laptop, or on the cloud. If you don't know how to, learn. (you can youtube this!)

2. Teach your son how to access Google Drive, or Dropbox. They need to have a file "backup" for their computer. Too many students don't back up their work and then lose it!

3. Never underestimate the value of a care package from Mom. Send it in the mail, even if you saw your son on Saturday.

4.Encourage your son to join a club on campus that is not "athletic based."

5. Don't stress out about "one bad grade." There is a major adjustment going on. There is time to recover. Encourage your son to meet with their professors and use the academic resources on campus. It is important to be supportive adn not compund the stress that your son is "feeling."

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Forester Family Grieving Loss of D.J. Baker

Forester Family Grieving Loss of D.J. Baker: The Lake Forest College community is mourning the loss of D.J. Baker, who passed away unexpectedly on Wednesday.

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

First 5- Q & A for First Time Forester Parents

What are things that you could learn on the fly, but we would rather help you!

Q: On August 11th, Move-in Day, will my son move into their permanent dorm room?

A: YES! we will have a 3 hour block for you to help you move your son into his dorm and have lunch on your own.

Q: Where do parents stay when they come to Lake Forest?

A: Almost exclusively, our parents will stay at the Hotel Indigo, in Vernon Hills. It is a tradition unlike any other! They have a weekday rate of $119 and a Weekend (including Friday) rate of $89. This is located in the heart of restaurants, shopping, and anything else you would need. This is also where the Chicago Bears house their rookies during the season. We have blocks set aside for the 10th and 11th for our report day. Additionally, we have booked a block of rooms for Homecoming. Last year, we were shut out of the hotel. I would encourage you to book Homecoming rooms (October 7th/8th) now! Make sure that you ask for our room block!

Q: Are there any traditions I should know about?

A: This could be it's own blog entry. A few of the larger traditions on game day:
1. The Forester Walk- Our team is lead by a bag pipe player throughout our campus and has three different stops where they perform different chants/songs.
2. Pregame Parent Tailgate: this one is just for you as parents. Enjoy fellowship with a number of parents from across the country. We have our own lot, and it fills up fast!
3. Our touchdown song is a dance remix of Johnny Cash's Country Boy. This song started about six years ago, and has become a part of our "lives" as Foresters! This is a get up and dance (hand wave) song!
Click on this link to sample the noise of a post game TD! COUNTRY BOY

4. Post Game Tailgate- After our home games, our players and their parents get together in the tailgate lot for dinner. There is always a theme that is magnificently organized by the Gridiron Gang! Feel free to jump in and help, bring your favorite dessert, or find other ways to be a part of an extremely festive get together.

Q: Who are important people to know at games that aren't coaches?

A: Derek Lambert: The PA Voice of the Foresters

Jackie Slaats: Athletic Director

President Steve Schutt (SK-UTT)- President of the College, and HUGE Forester Fan!

Brian Bruha- Director of Athletic Facilities- He does a LOT to help get our Tailgate area set up, cleaned up, and rolling in the morning.

Andrew Rauen- Strength and Conditioning Coach and Asst. Director of Athletic Facilities- not only does he put our guys through workouts year round, he assists Bruha with getting the tailgate area going.

Mike Gilboe- Head Athletic Trainer- Gilboe takes care of our guys when they are hurt, regardless of the severity of the injury. Gilboe has a cult following throughout the Forester family!

Q: What are some restaurants in the area I should go to:

1. The Lantern. A Lake Forest legend. Classic burger and fried food tavern. Best beer in Lake Forest.
2. Buffo's Pizza, Highwood. One of the best Italian Beefs on the North Shore.
3. Ferentino's Pizza, the BEST deep dish in Lake County. Hands down. Their eggplant panini is pretty darn good too!
4. The Mean Wiener, Highwood- though their hot dogs are good, their Wednesday Taco Special is a hit among all Foresters.
5. Big Ed's BBQ (Waukegan), Real Urban BBQ (Highland Park/Lincolnshire) the two places that battle for the best BBQ in the area.
6. Pizza Deville, Libertyville. Owned by a LFC Alum. He has specialty pizzas and salads. I recommend the Pride of the Yankees.

Check back in June for Five more Questions and Answers!

Wednesday, May 18, 2016

End of the Year

The end of the academic calendar is always bittersweet. We have the opportunity to see our young men walk across the stage at graduation and step into the "real world." This years class did a great job preparing themselves for a bright future, and several of them have taken on undertakings that are both noble, and hopefully profitable.

A few of the placements our guys have undertaken for their next step (not a complete list):
* Graduate School at Palmer College of Chiropractic
* Junior Account Executive at Currency Capital in Phoenix, AZ
* Police Officer with Bolingbrook Police Department
* Transitions Anallyst at Northern Trust Bank
* Account Manager at AFN Logistics
.... and many more!

We had a number of great things happen to our players throughout the spring semester which were highlighted in various social media platforms-- Relay for Life, Volunteering with Special Olympics, Feed My Starving Children, Great Lakes Adaptive Sports, Lake Forest "Little Scouts" Daycare, among others. Our players contributed over 1,500 hours of service to the community this year!

Our players had the opportunity to have seven speakers as part of our leadership series that were outstanding. They challenged, motivated, and taught our players skills and through processes that they can use to make the Forester Football program better, but also any organization that they are a part of now, or in the future.

Our players continue to hold leadership roles throughout campus. Whether it is serving as an RA, the president of FCA, the President of the Student Ambassadors, etc, our players step up both on and off the field. This leadership is an example of strong team members, and diversely passionate individuals. The special make up of our team makes it thoroughly enjoyable.

One player who truly stood out this spring was Miko Delacruz '18. In addition to his football efforts, being an Academic-All Conference Selection, he was also a member of the student ambassadors through our admissions department, he performed in the school's spring play, participated on the College's Dance Team, and a member of Alpha Phi Omega.

Miko performing in the College's Spring Performance of "20k".

This is the type of experience that is available for all of our players, and they do a great job taking advantage of what we have accessible to them! The Forester Edge is significant!

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

George Vidas Named to NFF Hampshire Honor Society

George Vidas Named to NFF Hampshire Honor Society: Lake Forest College's George Vidas was included the National Football Foundation and College Hall of Fame (NFF) announced Wednesday the members of the 2016 NFF Hampshire Honor Society, which is comprised of college football players from all divisions of play who each maintained a cumulative 3.2 GPA or better throughout their college career.