What We Do
OA utilizes a sports-themed approach to help the athletic community win in the game of life.
OA trains and supports college student-athletes to coach grade school student-athletes’ off-field performance. Our three programs fit together to create a connected, year-round learning experience that engages students through a competition-based learning model.
OA 12: Twelve in-school sessions during the school lunch period.
The Orange Arrow experience starts with OA 12, the off-field performance school sessions during the academic year that occur during the students’ lunch periods. Teams of OA Coaches engage OA Players in a competition based curriculum that develops skills, disposition, and healthy social connections. Friendly, fun competition is infused into four different types of exercises:
- Challenging speaking and listening tasks;
- Critical thinking & problem solving;
- Decorum exercises; and
- Leadership development.
OA Field Events: Enrichment trips, events, and activities
Complementing the school-based sessions is a series of Field Events. These enrichment experiences happen throughout the school year. They include “Family Tailgate” events, “Training Tables” and arts and culture trips that expand students’ social connections and give them a chance to practice the skills and dispositions they are developing throughout the season.
- Family Tailgates brings college student-athlete coaches together with grade school student-athletes, families, supporters and stakeholders to build relationships and community;
- Training Tables take college and grade school student-athletes to dinner at high-end restaurants to learn fine dining etiquette and practice engaging in-depth conversation;
- Arts & Culture: Theatre and cultural events are also part of the experience. Athletes have gone to the ballet, art museums, and plays / musicals such as West Side Story.
OA Performance Invitational: The Summer Academy
The OA Performance Invitational closes the year of programming and kicks off a new season of learning. Here, the grade school student-athletes attend a weeklong camp on the campus of the university that is the hub for the local OA program. During the OA Performance Invitational youth take classes in college classrooms, eat in the college dining halls, and take tours of the campus while continuing to develop in Orange Arrow’s focus areas through our highly-interactive, Competition-based Learning Model. OA Field Events to local museums, team building, visits from university academic advisors and a culminating athletic and fun skills competition called the OA Olympics keep the students engaged, on the go, learning, and satisfied. The experience is adjusted but just as enjoyable when in a virtual setting due to the pandemic.
Training and supporting College Athletes
College student-athlete coaches are the key to OA’s success, and their development is a big part of OA’s impact.
OA trains and supports a Head Coach to lead each team, and take responsibility for the success of their cohort of assistant coaches and student participants.
Assistant Coaches provide general support to the Head Coach throughout the session with operations, media, and data.
Meanwhile, OA Interns are current college student-athletes obtaining credit through their internship by supporting OA in operations, marketing, and program design.
“Working as an Orange Arrow intern was much more than gaining experience – it involved positively changing children’s lives for the better to prepare them for their futures. Helping the children grow also helped me grow as well, and I will be able to take a lot of what I learned and use it in the real world.”
Coaches complete training led by Orange Arrow staff and are supported throughout the program, with virtual coaching available before and after each session. They also engage in film study, watching veteran Head Coaches lead sessions.
The power of the experience for the college athletes is as compelling. One of the best ways to learn is by teaching. By having the experience of working together in this way, leading and guiding young athletes, telling their stories, and facilitating learning and development coaches themselves internalize these lessons in a way that goes beyond what they would experience any other way.
OA Coaches provides sports-themed coaching and consulting services focused on building culturally competent teams, communities and organizations through our array of diversity, culture, and inclusion engagement services, including our signature three step approach of the OA Scouting Report, OA Huddled Up, and OA Game Plan.
- OA Scouting Report: a comprehensive assessment to analyze the breadth, scope, and impact of an organization’s diversity, culture, inclusion (DCI) resources and needs.
- OA Huddled Up: is our learner-oriented education series, Developing Diversity Consciousness to Foster Inclusive Cultures and Teams.
- OA Game Plan: is a customized DCI action plan playbook, developed in concert with organizations to detail and drive organizational DCI strategies and outcomes.