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Men's basketball vs Princeton Credit: Amanda Suarez , Amanda Suarez

While most athletes are grinding through offseason conditioning programs or spending times with friends and family, one of Penn basketball’s elites is spending his time in a much different way: promoting leadership to high school student athletes.

In addition to taking the floor in the Delco Pro-Am league, rising senior Miles Cartwright, the premier point guard for the Quakers, has taken his ambitions and passion to the West Coast, working for the Sports Challenge Leadership Academy.

Coach Polykoff was one of the directors here before he came to Penn,” Cartwright said. “I said I needed a job and after a few calls and consideration I got on board.”

The Academy is part of a three-tier initiative that promotes personal and group leadership in coaches and student athletes.

In this program, sports are used as the model to identify and foster leadership skills in student athletes. In addition, there is an education component where students are engaged in a classroom setting and taught different aspects of the Sports Challenge curriculum.

“The program is trying to get high school students athletes and try and teach them to be leaders,” Cartwright said.

“There are a lot of misconceptions about leadership, like leaders are born and have to lead one way. We try and get the kids to hone their skills through sports as leaders.”

The program doesn’t just focus on the underprivileged demographic but represents student athletes from all social strata and has participants from 15 states attending in Los Angeles.

Cartwright is looking to expand his influence in the Academy, as he is seeking donations to reach a goal of $8,000. In time, Cartwright hopes to have his own donors page where people can donate through his personal page.

Right now, donations can be accepted through the donors page at

Cartwright is a living manifestation of the curriculum that the SportsChallenge Leadership Academy is bringing to high school student athletes.

In addition to spending long hours in the gym, Cartwright is training the next generation of student athletes and our future leaders.

One of the components of the Academy states that leaders don’t have to lead in just one specific way.

To win an Ivy title, a team’s leader needs numerous tricks to get his team going, and while Cartwright is helping train future student-athletes, perhaps he’ll pick up a few things himself.

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