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Issue 530 - Are you eager or just willing? (Booker T. Washington Part Eleven)

Woodens Wisdom
Wooden's Wisdom - Volume 11 Issue 530
Craig Impelman Speaking |  Championship Coaches |  Champion's Leadership Library Login



Booker T. Washington was an American educator, author, orator, and adviser to several presidents of the United States. Between 1890 and 1915, he was the dominant leader of American educational innovation and reform.
His mentor was General Samuel Armstrong. In 1868, General Jackson founded the Hampton Institute in Virginia. The Institute was the first school where African and Native American students could receive a post-secondary education to become teachers. In 1872 Booker T. Washington enrolled in the Hampton Institute.
The loyalty and unselfishness of General Armstrong and Booker T. Washington resulted in amazing Team Spirit at Hampton. John Wooden defined Team Spirit in part as: "An eagerness to sacrifice” not just a willingness to sacrifice.
In his 1901 autobiography, Up From Slavery, Dr. Washington tells this amazing story:
"While I was a student at Hampton, the dormitories became so crowded that it was impossible to find room for all who wanted to be admitted. To help remedy the difficulty, the General conceived the plan of putting up tents to be used as rooms. As soon as it became known that General Armstrong would be pleased if some of the older students would live in the tents during the winter, nearly every student in school volunteered to go.
I was one of the volunteers. The winter that we spent in those tents was an intensely cold one. More than once, during a cold night, when a stiff gale would be blowing, our tent was lifted bodily, and we would find ourselves in the open air. We suffered severely. — how much, I am sure General Armstrong never knew, because we made no complaints. It was enough for us to know that we were pleasing General Armstrong, and that we were making it possible for an additional number of students to secure an education."
Are you eager to help others or just willing?

Yours in Coaching,
Craig Impelman




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Application Exercise



Under A Tree

Under a tree where the breezes blow,
There is the spot that it's good to go
With the children bronzed by the Summer sun,
Bubbling with laughter and wholesome fun;
And I gather them round — all the happy clan,
And forget for a while I'm a grizzled old man.

Marjorie, Florence, and fair Lucille,
Freddy and Denny — and then we steal
An hour or two from the clock of life,
The quest of gold and the constant strife,
The clamor and noise of a city day
For the peace and joy of a bit of play.

Pirate stories for boys we tell,
For there is the place to tell them well;
With treasure islands we build in sand,
And we mark the spot where the pirates land,
And even the place where the gold was hid
By that master of pirates, old Captain Kidd.

Then we leave the pirates and run away
To the wonderful glens where the fairies play;
And under the tree where the breezes are
We summon the fairies with crown and star,
And I tell of the wonderful things they do
When the sun is up and the skies are blue.

And the far off world may call and call,
But I never hear through my little wall
Of innocent youngsters that hem me in.
I finish one tale and a new begin;
And there we sit underneath the tree
Till mother calls all of us in for tea.

Edgar Albert Guest (1881-1959)






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