HARLEM, N.Y. – Haverford College men's lacrosse senior Kevin Goshorn recently had the opportunity to speak alongside Jim Brown at the 2017 Harlem Lacrosse Annual Benefit. Goshorn, who is the first college student-athlete to emerge from the Harlem Lacrosse program, had the chance to share his story in hopes of inspiring the next generation of Harlem Lacrosse players that will succeed both on and off field.
Harlem Lacrosse, with the assistance of former men's lacrosse All-American Joel Censer '08 as the program's Director of Advancement, has a mission to empower children who are at risk for academic decline to ultimately reach their full potential in all aspects of life. The students are encouraged to dream big about the future while also working hard both on the lacrosse field and in the classroom.
To help students succeed, Harlem Lacrosse provides full-day, year-round support with program directors having a constant presence in the lives of those students. These program directors help students in all aspects of their lives, including study halls, tutoring, admission counseling, college trips, service learning, and career exploration on top of lacrosse practice which helps the students gain confidence, work with teammates, and persevere through obstacles.
Harlem Lacrosse caught the attention of Goshorn nearly 10 years ago and has made a lasting impression ever since. "In 2008, Simon Cataldo introduced the game of lacrosse to his students because he believed that it could be a tool to motivate his students," said Goshorn. "While I was not one of his students, I was attracted to the game because of the fast paced nature of the game and the unique skill set that it requires. As a member of his first team, we were expected to work hard and be disciplined on the field and in the classroom. These values have become a standard for all student-athletes as the organization grew to what it is today."
Ever since Goshorn committed to growing with Harlem Lacrosse, the program has continued to pay huge dividends in his life, ultimately helping him gain admission into Haverford College. "Harlem Lacrosse can be credited for helping me become a student-athlete at Haverford for several reasons. During my junior year in high school, the Harlem Lacrosse staff helped me through the admissions process at the New Hampton School. At New Hampton, I took a full course load of International Baccalaureate classes and played lacrosse against elite New England talent. These experiences not only helped bolster my application but prepared me to have success in the classroom and on the field. In addition to the boarding school admission process, Harlem Lacrosse staffer Joel Censer '08 was influential in my decision to apply early decision to Haverford."
Arriving at Haverford in the fall of 2014, Goshorn has been one of the steadiest contributors to the men's lacrosse program over the past three seasons. Playing in the midfield, Goshorn has appeared in every game during his first three seasons with the Fords, totaling 12 goals and 12 assists during that time. Now an economics major who will graduate this spring, Goshorn has been a trailblazer for the Harlem Lacrosse program as the first student to play a sport at the college level.
"It is a huge honor to be the first collegiate student-athlete to graduate from Harlem Lacrosse. I want the younger generation to see me as the standard that they want to reach and exceed. I'm looking forward to the day where we have alums from the program being student athletes at elite Division I universities."
Traveling back to New York for the 2017 Harlem Lacrosse Annual Benefit, Goshorn had the chance to tell his story to those students he is trying to inspire as the keynote speaker on the same stage where NFL Hall of Famer Jim Brown was the first ever recipient of Harlem Lacrosse's Trailblazer Award.
"Sharing the stage with the great Jim Brown was remarkable. He is the standard for black lacrosse players, black athletes, and black men around the country. A man who used his stardom to triumph so many charitable causes is someone that I am honored to be in the presence of."
Brown's charitable work certainly left an impression on Goshorn. "It's important for me to share my experiences with current program participants because it is the easiest way I can give back to my community. Lacrosse is a game that has done wonderful things for my life, and I hope that by giving back I do the same things for the current players."
To learn more about Harlem Lacrosse, please visit their official website.