Team IMPACT, a nonprofit that matches children facing serious illness and disability with college sports teams, announced its official partnership with the University of Michigan today.
Michigan’s work with Team IMPACT began in 2014 when the men’s lacrosse team signed Brendan, a then-14-year-old boy who lives with epilepsy. In the time since, Team IMPACT teammates have been signed onto 27 rosters across Michigan Athletics, with more matches coming in the near future. In addition to these incredible relationships, five Wolverine student-athletes have worked as Team IMPACT Fellows, furthering the program’s impact on Michigan’s campus and in the Weshtenaw County community.
These relationships and Michigan’s work with Team IMPACT were celebrated on January 13 at the Stonehill hockey game, where active and alumni matches were in attendance to commemorate the student-athletes and staff who have welcomed Team IMPACT teammates and their families over the past 10 years. Stonehill Athletics has also been a proud partner of Team IMPACT since 2021, with 27 matches all-time with the Skyhawks.
“We are so grateful for the Michigan Athletics community and the continuous outpour they give to our families involved with Team IMPACT,” said Team IMPACT’s Midwest Regional Director of Programs, Kiernan McGeehan. “From Team IMPACT Fellows to actively matched teams to alumni matches, there is a bit of everything to love about working with Michigan. This partnership reinforces the Wolverine’s dedication to changing the lives of families, kids, and student-athletes across the community.”
“Team IMPACT has been a special part of the Michigan student-athlete experience for the last ten years,” said Colette Hemker DeHetre, Michigan Athletics’ Assistant Director of Leadership Development and Community relations. “Team IMPACT’s model of intentional relationship-building between the child, their family, and the team has life-changing effects. While the young people participating in the program benefit, an equally, if not more, impactful outcome is on the student-athletes. The leadership, growth mindset, perspective-taking, and sheer joy they receive from being such a big part of their young teammates’ lives are unmatched. I’m so excited that our partnership is becoming official and can’t wait to see how more lives are changed. Go Blue!”
The partnership will endeavor to promote Team IMPACT’s work on campus, match more teammates with Michigan’s college sports teams, and to celebrate their existing matches throughout the year. Michigan’s work with Team IMPACT will also be recognized at the 11th Annual Big House 5K this April. The 5K was founded by the Michgian Athletic Department in 2014 and has raised more than $1.25 million in support of local nonprofit organizations. This year, Michigan Athletics has selected Team IMPACT as one of six beneficiaries of the Big House 5K. To learn more and register for this year’s race, please visit the Big House 5K landing page.