Once again, the San Jose Earthquakes and the Metro San Jose Police Activities League (PAL) will make a difference for young soccer players in the Bay Area. The team announced on Thursday that Metro San Jose Police Activities League has agreed to re-join the Earthquakes as a Student of the Game partner.
Metro PAL is the Quakes first and oldest Student of the Game partner, joining the program in 2002 and opting to renew its membership for a fourth exciting season, as the 1,500-2,000 soccer players in Metro PAL will each receive one ticket to an Earthquakes regular season game at Spartan Stadium, as well as the numerous other benefits that the program provides.
"We are honored to announce our continued relationship with the Police Activities League," Earthquakes President & General Manager Alexi Lalas said. "This is an organization that represents everything we hope for from our Student of the Game partners. They are committed to supporting youth soccer in our community and recognize the value of an association with the San Jose Earthquakes."
The Earthquakes Student of the Game program was established in 2002 to provide Bay Area youth soccer leagues with an education-based curriculum that will further enhance youth players, coaches and parents soccer knowledge and appreciation for the game. The Earthquakes program motivates and educates by providing partner leagues with exclusive access to the Quakes coaches and players through coaching clinics and appearances, among other benefits.
The San Jose Metro PAL will once again take advantage of those benefits in 2005. Metro PAL consists of children ranging from elementary school to high school age in Santa Clara County, Milpitas, Willow Glen, Cambria and Rose Garden. San Jose Metro PAL Director Officer Vince Williams and Chairman of the Board Brian Jarvis, once again worked on the successful partnership that is highlighted by a Metro PAL night at a future Earthquakes game, with players appearing in a pre-game "Parade of Champions" on the field at Spartan Stadium.
In addition to a league night and pre-game "Parade of Champions", Student of the Game partner leagues are also able to take advantage of programs such as a special behind the scenes coaching clinic with Quakes and other MLS coaches at an Earthquakes home game in addition to on-site coaches clinics, player appearances, an Alexi Lalas appearance and an exclusive advanced level coaching event for their clubs. Partner leagues receive a newsletter with training tips for players; the ability to purchase uniforms and equipment at reduced rates, discounts on Quakes tickets as well as other fundraising and sponsorship options.
PAL is a nonprofit organization founded over 30 years ago by a group of police officers, spearheaded by San Francisco Police Detective, Charles Ellis. Each California PAL chapter is operated by law enforcement officers and other volunteers, and offers diverse activities from athletic teams to after school tutoring, computer training and educational field trips. The PAL program was founded on the concept that when police and youth work together in a non-confrontational and cooperative manner, the result will be safer communities for both youth and adults alike.