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This summer, ACE offered four virtual service programs and one in-person US-based program focused on supporting community-based organizations located in Peru, South Africa, Thailand, Vietnam, and Colorado for 22 Duke and Stanford student-athletes representing 17 different sports teams. Virtual programs allow ACE the opportunity to continue to offer impactful summer service experiences for Duke and Stanford student-athletes in the midst of the on-going global COVID-19 pandemic and provide a flexible option for student-athletes to engage in service experiences. Some student-athletes completed their ACE experience while living on campus, training and taking summer school classes, while others while others participated from their hometowns located around the world.

“At first, I was unsure if an online program could provide me with this experience, but this program and all the people I met definitely went above and beyond, meeting and exceeding my highest expectations.”

– Cara Sambeth, Stanford Women’s Field Hockey, ACE in Place South Africa

The ACE in Colorado program, ACE’s first ever in-person US-based program, gave student’s impactful experience and education in environmental conservation and sustainability, and maintained ACE’s mission of delivering experiences to student-athletes through discussion and engagement on global conservation efforts.

This summer’s programs were a culmination of the efforts of the ACE staff, ACE Ambassador Alumni, and community partners working together to bring ACE back to in-person programming as well as continuing to provide meaningful virtual service experiences.

“I could speak about all the amazing things I enjoyed in Colorado, but honestly, every day was a blessing, and I am thankful to have met the people and seen the places I did. I feel like this experience offered many things I can take away in addition to the relationships. Most importantly, however, this experience registered a great lesson in living in the moment, being where your feet are, and showing appreciation for your surroundings.”

– Connor Drake, Duke Men’s Lacrosse, ACE in Colorado

Through virtual and in-person service experiences, ACE student-athletes had the opportunity to participate in collaborative service projects, form relationships across the Duke and Stanford athletic community, and connect with community partners around the world. Across the five programs, ACE student-athletes contributed over 950 hours of service.

View full Duke Athletics press release.