Young Quakers Community Athletics

Imagine a program in which children in West Philadelphia schools can learn a new sport from collegiate athletes of the highest echelon. Where 4th-8th graders can practice writing, study skills, and time management with top university students one-on-one. Where friendships are formed, talents are sharpened, and dreams are born. Young Quakers Community Athletics (YQCA) is that program, and we invite you to play a part.


Young Quakers Community Athletics is an afterschool initiative between the Barbara and Edward Netter Center for Community Partnerships and the Division of Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics. This initiative, directed through Netter’s University-Assisted Community Schools program (UACS), creates mutually beneficial partnerships between select Penn intercollegiate athletic teams and West Philadelphia public schools. It works with select kindergarten-through-eighth-grade University-Assisted Community Schools (UACS) in West Philadelphia to establish athletic teams and engage them with Penn’s own varsity teams. The Penn players mentor the children on the field and off. In addition to the mentoring, the program provides staff, coaches, uniforms, sports equipment, bus transportation, and access to the University’s world-class playing fields at no cost to the schools or their students. The program participants also benefit from the Netter Center’s comprehensive UACS programming, which brings additional academic, human, and material resources from Penn to their schools during the school day, after school, and in the summer.


Founded in 2012 with boys’ lacrosse at Comegys Community School, YQCA has grown quickly to include girls’ lacrosse at Comegys and co-ed track at Huey Community School and Lea Community School with plans for reaching even more students through additional sports in the future.


The Penn athletes meet regularly with the young team’s community school children for athletic and academic mentoring at their schools and the University. These organized meetings involve exercise, sports training, and academic enrichment activities such as journaling, role-playing, and the use of weekly planners. The children and their mentors also have the opportunity to talk informally about things such as sports, schoolwork, favorite activities, and life goals.






Partner Websites


For more Information, contact:

Jennifer Chu, Director of Young Quakers Community Athletics Program,