The Bears School Outreach program wrapped up its 18th successful season on Tuesday, December 15 when Bears Senior Director of Special Projects Patrick McCaskey and wide receiver Alshon Jeffery visited Austin High School; defensive lineman Will Sutton visited Hope College Prep High School; guard Patrick Omameh visited Amundsen High School; wide receiver Eddie Royal visited Ella Flagg Young Elementary; and cornerback Bryce Callahan visited Collins High School.
Each year, the Chicago Bears and Youth Guidance partner on the Bears School Outreach program. As part of Bears School Outreach, Chicago Bears players visit Chicago Public Schools to speak to, motivate, and interact with students who are part of Youth Guidance's B.A.M (Becoming a Man) and W.O.W. (Working on Womanhood) programs.
B.A.M. focuses on six core values, including Integrity, Accountability, Self-Determination, Positive Anger Expression, Visionary Goal Setting, and Respect for Womanhood. W.O.W. focuses on five core values, including Self-Awareness, Emotional Intelligence, Healthy Relationships, Visionary Goal-Setting, and Leadership.
During B.A.M and W.O.W. sessions, the players and students are asked to "check-in" by saying how they are feeling physically, intellectually, emotionally and spiritually. Once everyone checks in, the B.A.M. and W.O.W. counselors will lead the session, either focusing on one of the core values, or on an issue that a student or students may be struggling with.
The sessions offer an open forum for students to discuss what is on their minds and hearts, and get feedback from their peers and leaders. The Bears players participate freely in the discussions, often sharing challenges that they faced growing up, which students are usually surprised to find aren't much different from what they are facing today.
During the 2015 season, 22 Bears players visited 25 different Chicago Public schools. Players who supported Bears School Outreach this year included Adrian Amos, Lamin Barrow, Bryce Callahan, Tayo Fabuluje, Kyle Fuller, Lamarr Houston, Demontre Hurst, Alshon Jeffery, Jarvis Jenkins, Christian Jones, Jonathan Anderson, Jeremy Langford, Khari Lee, Charles Leno Jr., Jr., Marc Mariani, Shea McClellin, Zach Miller, Patrick Omameh, Antrel Rolle, Eddie Royal, Matt Slauson, and Will Sutton.
Bears School Outreach is one of the Bears longest-running programs and is brought to you by the University of Phoenix, the Official Education Partner of the Chicago Bears.