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Little Things Mean a Lot

Sam Tremblay
Samantha Tremblay.

Not many people can say they have started a movement.  But Samantha Tremblay, a sophomore at Elon University in Elon, North Carolina, has done just that with tennis on her campus.  Tremblay, who played tennis throughout her high school days, participated in the intramural tennis program at Elon during her freshman year.  Yet she did not have the tennis experience she hoped for.

"The intramural [program] was one night per week, and we only played on pro set, so there wasn't much tennis actually played," Tremblay says.

Wanting more, she set out to form a sport club tennis team.  With little initial support, she organized Elon's newest sport club's court time, practice schedule, financial plan, and match schedule even before the club had any members.  At its meeting, the sport club attracted more than 70 students who were extremely enthusiastic about the prospect of Elon having a club tennis team.

Amy Thomas, USTA North Carolina Community Program Developer, and Meghan Dillon, Elon University's Assistant Director of Campus Recreation, aided Tremblay's efforts to establish a sport club.  The team is now comprised of more than 50 students.

Last October, Elon posted its first win, against the University of North Carolina - Greensboro, and continued to roll over its next two opponents, the University of North Carolina - Wilmington, and the University of North Carolina - Charlotte.  In December, Elon's Club Sports Council took notice of the new sport club's 3-0 record and Tremblay's hard work, and awarded the club tennis team the distinguised honor of Elon University's Club of the Month.

This was not Tremblay's first attempt to launch a new program.  In high school, she had started a nonprofit organization called Little Things Mean a Lot (LTMAL) to collect trial-size hygiene products and distribute them to those in need.

"Organizing LTMAL definitely helped when organizing the club tennis team," Tremblay says.  "It was pretty much doing the same thing, taking something that didn't exist before and creating it.  It also gave me the confidence and business skills that I needed to start the club at Elon."

Elon University's club tennis team is now looking forward to its spring season and competing in the USTA Campus Championship - Southern.

To set up a match with Elon, contact Samantha Tremblay at stremblay@elon.edu.  To visit the Elon Club Tennis Team website, go to http://org.elon.edu/clubtennis/.  And to visit Little Things Mean a Lot, log on to www.ltmal.org.