Welcome New Summer Staff!
By Katharine Manroe
Summer is here and that means camp has finally begun! Everyone at ESP is so excited for everything we have planned for this summer – ESP’s Tribal Summer is sure to be the best summer camp yet! We have a few new additions to our summer camp staff, so here’s a chance to get to know the newest members of our family and help welcome them to ESP!
Meet Mary Beth
Mary Beth is a student at the University of Georgia who dreams of one day being a special education teacher! Mary Beth has two brothers with autism. With a passion for serving individuals of all abilities, Mary Beth knew she knew she had to join ESP after her roommate told her about the organization. She is super excited for prom and hopes to make at least one camper smile every day this summer. Mary Beth hopes that she can become an individual campers can come and talk to anytime. She absolutely can’t wait to make sure campers are having fun every single day this summer! Mary Beth is a self-proclaimed dog person and loves spending time with her friends.
Imoni is studying at the University of Georgia to one day become a Board Certified Behavior Analyst and start her own behavior therapy camp for children. Imoni wished to join ESP’s summer staff because of she loves making a real difference! She loves that ESP empowers every individual to thrive and wanted to contribute to the ESP family. Imoni is looking forward to becoming friends with both the campers and her other staff members! She can’t wait to experience Camp Twin Lakes for the first time! Imoni likes dancing and coloring her hair different colors.
Harper loved volunteering at 360 so much that she “couldn’t think of a better way to spend summer” than becoming a summer staff member! Harper is a third year student at the University of Georgia and dreams of one day providing special education opportunities to all individuals around the world. Harper has been a lifeguard for the ESPioneers in the past, so she can’t wait for all the swimming campers will get to do this summer! Harper is from Gainesville, Georgia and is also involved with the University of Georgia Wesley Foundation. She is also learning to play the ukulele and loves being outdoors.
After a professor suggested she check out ESP, Kortney fell in love with our ESPiranhas and wanted to continue working with ESP this summer! She is most excited for prom because she loves seeing everyone dressed to the nines. In order to prepare for prom, she’s ready to have some spontaneous dance parties with campers this summer! Kortney is studying to become a special education teacher at the University of Georgia (Go Dawgs!) and always introduces herself as “Kortney with a K” to minimize confusion about her name. She enjoys spending time with her friends and dogs when not at ESP.
After overhearing someone talk about volunteering for 360, MaryClare decided to try it out for herself! After experiencing our amazing 360 family, MaryClare wanted to join our summer staff family as well! MaryClare is looking forward to the many field trips planned for this summer, so she can experience the magic of ESP all around Georgia. MaryClare is prepared to come to camp every day with a positive attitude in order to encourage her campers to enjoy every second of camp. MaryClare has run 5 half marathons, but admits she didn’t train for any of them. She enjoys hiking, playing tennis, and enjoying the outdoors.
As an Athens native, ESP has always had a large presence in Sadie’s life. After attending events and being friends with some of our campers, Sadie knew it was time to join the ranks at ESP! Sadie is looking forward to being a servant leader this summer by listening and encouraging campers and supporting their decisions. She is also excited to connect with both campers and staff and to have fun every day of camp. Sadie is a student at Georgia Southern University and is a recreational therapy major. She firmly believes that if you love what you do, you’ll never work a day in your life! In her free time, Sadie loves cheering on both the Eagles and the Dawgs! She is also learning sign language and enjoys spending time with her dog, Kayla.
Alicia fell in love with ESP while working with 360 and knew she had to come join in on the fun of summer camp! Alicia found out about ESP through her friends and Butterfly Dreams Farm. Alicia can’t wait to spend the summer with our incredible campers and make tons of memories. She studying to become a speech-language pathologist at the University of Georgia. Alicia is looking forward to the field trips and Camp Twin Lakes the most and can’t wait to see each camper thrive! Alicia loves being outside, reading, and exploring more of the world – she even spent 9 months in the Dominican Republic between high school and college!
Marie has volunteered with ESP for about a year and has always felt right at home with the ESP family. She decided to join summer staff so she could devote all of her time and energy to giving back to the organization she loves! When talking about this summer, Marie said, “honestly, who wouldn’t want to spend their summer surrounded by so much love and joy?” She is really looking forward to this year’s prom and celebrating the summer! Marie is both an avid traveler and huge Game of Thrones fan. She has visited Australia, New Zealand, Fiji, and Ecuador in the past year and is planning her next trip to Greece! Marie is going to give each and every camper as much love, encouragement, and support as she can this summer.
Sarah has volunteered with our ESPiranhas and worked with ESP during the summer of 2015. We’re so excited Sarah is back with the ESP family to make this summer the best yet! Sarah believes that “ESP is a place that teaches you what true joy is” and that she “has learned more during my time at ESP than anywhere else”. She is most excited for the field trip weeks this summer and will do her best to be a source of encouragement and motivation for campers and staff alike. Sarah graduated from Augusta University this past May and will be attending Occupational Therapy School in the fall! In her free time, Sarah enjoys hiking and swimming and frequent Target trips!
Neely is a junior at the University of Georgia who can’t wait to join the summer staff ranks and help create an atmosphere of love and happiness at ESP! Neely was part of Young Life’s summer staff in Colorado last summer, but she’s ready for the unique experience of ESP’s summer camp! Neely is prepared to help out wherever she is needed to make sure things run smoothly for our campers. She is most excited for the field trips because she loves traveling and trying new things. Neely enjoys arts and crafts and is in the middle of painting a cooler for a music festival. Neely loves both cats and dogs and is adopted!
Drew is familiar with ESP because of his brother, EPS’r Burke! Drew is looking forward to our NKA weeks this summer because he is excited to spend time with his brother and his friends! Drew decided to join our summer stuff because he wanted to make a positive impact on his community and help brighten the days of our campers. He is ready to work hard and go the extra mile to make sure every camper feels welcome and has fun every day. In his free time, Drew enjoys both watching and playing sports. He prefers dogs over cats and is fluent in Spanish!
Hunter is studying at the University of Alabama and aspires to be either a family therapist or social worker. Although she goes to school in Alabama, Hunter has lived in Oconee County since she was a teenager and learned about ESP through a friend. She decided to join our summer staff because she was looking for a place where she could give back to others. Hunter can’t wait to get to know both the campers and staff and make sure everyone is having a good day. Despite her fear of frogs, Hunter is looking forward to spending time at Camp Twin Lakes! Hunter is a photographer and also enjoys cooking.
David discovered ESP after his friends volunteered with 360 – he heard such great things about ESP, he had to experience the magic for himself! David hopes he can be a source of support for our campers in whatever capacity is needed this summer; as a shoulder to lean on, a hand to hold, or simply a comforting presence. He’s most excited to dance the night away at prom! David enjoys both writing and playing music and wants to be a music therapist. David is a sophomore at the University of Georgia.
Alex graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in finance this past May and is headed to Emory University School of Law in the fall! After supporting his friend Mallory at Big Hearts and hearing about the experiences of former summer staff, Alex knew he needed to get involved with ESP himself. Prom is on Alex’s birthday and he’s looking forward to spending the “greatest birthday ever” with our amazing campers! Alex is excited to do everything in his power to enrich his campers experiences this summer. In order to relax from his hectic schedule, Alex enjoys playing tennis, running, reading, and watching movies.
Amanda learned about ESP through friends who were involved and is excited to have the best summer yet! She graduated from Valdosta State University and hopes to become an occupational therapy assistant. Amanda describes herself as “upbeat” and hopes to make each day enjoyable and memorable for her campers. She is most excited for our field trip weeks and is prepared to lead by example for her campers this summer. Amanda has a “ridiculous fear of stickers” but she doesn’t let that stop her! She loves spending time outside with her dog, Lilly, when not at ESP.
Simon decided to join the ranks of ESP because he wanted to experience new things while helping give back to our community. Simon was a Boy Scout when he was younger, so he’s especially excited to join our campers at Camp Twin Lakes! Simon is energetic and wants to focus on making each camper he encounters smile every single day. Something a lot of people don’t know about Simon is that he has titanium plates in both of his feet. He enjoys camping, playing paintball with his friends, and driving his jeep with the top down. He also loves spending time at ESP volunteering.
Emma is a rising senior at Oconee County High School and has volunteered at ESP for the past three years. Emma has always dreamed of being part of our summer staff, but – until now – she either wasn’t old enough or couldn’t fit camp into her schedule. We’re so excited she is finally able to join us for the summer! Emma fell in love with ESP after helping out at ESP’s Fall Festival with her middle school Hero Club. Emma can’t wait to spend her summer with our campers, making sure everyone is having fun and staying safe. Emma will be able to keep our campers safe – she practices Brazilian Jiu Jitsu! She also enjoys drawing, reading, and performing arts!
Ansley discovered ESP through her roommate who has volunteered with our organization. Ansley wanted to join our camp staff because she wanted to give back to ESP while also growing and learning from her time here. She is looking forward to encouraging her campers to participate in fun camp activities and can’t wait for the firle trips! Ansley says she is simply “grateful for the opportunity to work with such amazing people this summer”! Ansley likes to stay active by playing volleyball and tennis and loves singing, painting, and drawing. She is also a student at the University of Georgia.
Jacob is a senior at the University of Georgia who dreams of one day becoming a special education teacher and football coach! You could say being a teacher is the family business, as Jacob will be the 5th generation in his family to pursue teaching as a career! Jacob learned about ESP through his fellow classmates who had been previously involved with camp. Jacob considers himself a versatile person, which he thinks is vital to making sure every camper is having fun at camp! He is excited to create lasting relationships with both the campers and his fellow staff members. In the fall, Jacob will begin as a volunteer high school football coach!
Ariana plans to get to know each camper on an individual level so she will be able to help each camper thrive! Ariana has joined our summer staff as part of her internship with ESP and she couldn’t be more thrilled to be part of the ESP family! She is most excited for the fun daily camp activities like flag and swimming! Ariana is graduating from the University of Georgia in December. While she doesn’t get to be as involved anymore, Ariana loves theatre and performing in musicals. She also loves hiking, playing the piano, and singing with her church band.
At the end of the summer, Laura is graduating from the University of North Carolina Wilmington and will one day become a recreational therapist! Laura learned about ESP through her internship supervisor and immediately knew she had to become part of the ESP family. She hopes to help campers build confidence by motivating and encouraging everyone to try new things! When not hanging out with our campers, Laura likes to play volleyball, run, and hang out with friends. She also has a hamster named Lil Mo!
Monika graduated from the University of North Carolina at Greensboro and wants to become a recreational therapist and certified child life specialist! She is excited to learn as much as she can from her time here at camp. Monika can’t wait to dance with her buddy at prom and enjoy seeing more of Georgia with our campers on field trip days. Something most people don’t know is that Monika’s parents allowed her to name her little brother when he was born. She likes to stay active by playing soccer and volleyball, but also can’t deny that she indulges in a few Netflix binge sessions every now and then!
Christy wanted to join our summer staff after volunteering with 360! She is currently studying at the University of Georgia in hopes of becoming an occupational therapist. Christy enjoys making connections with others and hopes to make every camper feel welcome and enjoy their time at camp! Since Christy loves camping, she is especially excited to spend time at Camp Twin Lakes this summer. Christy is actually a Florida native but loves exploring Athens with her friends! She also enjoys spending time biking and running.
Meet Sarah Anne
Sarah Anne firmly believes that a positive spirit can fix anything and hopes her “unbridled camp enthusiasm will be more contagious than the chickenpox”! She is most excited to be part of the amazing ESP family and spreading her infectious positive energy to both campers and staff. Sarah Anne is a student at the University of Georgia studying speech pathology. She loves her cat Ozymandias, who she calls “Oz” for short. Sarah Anne is also heavily involved with Town and Gown Players and is currently helping out with their production of Breakfast at Tiffany’s.Welcome new summer staff!