From its beginning back in 2003, Athlete Leadership University has been growing and changing to offer Special Olympics Indiana athletes more opportunities to take on meaningful roles within our movement and beyond.

During the ALU spring session, the program took an exciting step forward as Special Olympics Indiana President and CEO Jeff Mohler announced the start of the athlete internship program as a new leadership opportunity available especially to ALU graduates. Under this new program, Special Olympics Indiana recently welcomed four athlete interns to the staff.

Learn more about this first class of Special Olympics Indiana athlete interns and the projects they will work on for the next year.

Chelsea Davis, Johnson County

Internship focus: Volunteer recruitment

Years in Special Olympics: 20

“I want to be an intern at Special Olympics Indiana because I want to get more people involved in Special Olympics by telling my story and how it has changed my life. My internship is focusing on recruiting more volunteers and training them on how to work with athletes.”

Karen Kerr, Porter County

Internship focus: Athlete Leadership University (ALU)

Years in Special Olympics: 8

“I want to be a Special Olympics Indiana Intern because I want to apply what I have learned and what I have experienced being an athlete leader and apply that knowledge to help improve and grow Special Olympics Indiana. To best describe my internship project in one sentence, it’s engaging current and past ALU Athlete Leaders so they will return to ALU in the future.”

Melony Salla, Benton County

Internship focus: Challenging Athletes to Maximize Potential and Skill (CHAMPS)

Years in Special Olympics: 15

“I want to be an Intern in SOIN to learn more about this organization and how it all works at the state level. One of my goals is to help make Special Olympics better. My internship project is to make the CHAMPS program more effective, especially during Summer Games and in the long term open the door for more opportunities for them.”

Dorothy Zipperle, Clark-Floyd Counties

Internship focus: Technology

Years in Special Olympics: 5

“I want to be a Special Olympics Indiana athlete intern to help me develop my technology, communications and leadership skills to achieve my intern project goals, and hopefully to lead to a position at the state level. My internship project is to utilize technology and publications to educate and inform our local community on Special Olympics Indiana, and to help get more athletes and volunteers involved, and also work on fundraising.”