Practice Makes Purpose: Kaplan SBAs Share Memories About Boys & Girls Clubs of America

February 17, 2017
Kaplan Test Prep

Practice with a purpose with Kaplan and Boys & Girls Clubs of America

Here’s what can happen when you practice with a purpose.

Last month, we talked about how practice is good for you—and how it’s even better when it’s free, helps others, and promotes a purpose.

That’s why Practice with a Purpose, launched by Kaplan Test Prep and Boys & Girls Clubs of America, helps you get free practice options from the leader in test prep while also helping those in need access free test prep for their academic futures.

First there’s the practice

By participating in the free practice options we offer, you can get a good sense of where your strengths and weaknesses lie on one of the most important exams for your future. Practice as much as you want—for free!

… And then the purpose

Every practice option you take will help raise funds for scholarships given to kids in the Boys & Girls Clubs of America (BGCA)—an organization providing safe and engaging spaces for youth to learn and grow across the country.

Kaplan’s Student Brand Ambassadors (SBAs) share how their time being part of BGCA has shaped them into the people they are today. Here’s what they have to say.

To feel like a kid again

My involvement with the Boys & Girls Club in San Diego was through my fraternity. We volunteered there, spending time with the kids. We organized games for them to play, did things like Zumba and dancing—or basketball. Mostly, we wanted to do playful activities and just talk to them. The organization itself welcomed us with open arms, as they always love volunteers who are enthusiastic about helping with the kids.

I always feel like I can learn something from volunteering or community service. That is why I am a huge proponent of Boys & Girls Clubs. My time there reminded me of what happiness really is. Getting caught up in all the requirements of a pre-med curriculum can get you extremely stressed and can make you forget about the little things. For example, studying for the MCAT and taking a full course load at school at the same time was tough on me, and I felt like I was always tired, and overall not my complete self. 

Working with these kids reminded me how easy it is to have fun and be happy. They uplifted my spirits when I was with them. I felt like I absorbed their childhood spirit and I became more myself again. They reminded me of how to stay true to myself when life becomes busy or when you don’t have as much time as you used to have to cut loose. They reminded me that I am a kid at heart and to never forget that. They reminded me that it’s always important to have fun.

—Vishal Tharani
Student Brand Ambassador, Kaplan National Student Brand Ambassador Program
University of California San Diego

To provide a valuable service

At the Boys & Girls Club of Kentuckiana (Kentucky and Indiana combined), I helped watch kids in the classrooms after school. We would do art projects, make bracelets, and read books. It was really fun seeing that kids loved going there after school, and I loved seeing the staff so focused on keeping the kids engaged—and out of trouble.

I became involved with BGCA because I had to complete 20 service hours in high school involving a social justice issue. A friend of mine and I decided to do BGC of Kentuckiana (BGCK) together. We saw very quickly that the kids were really special. Many didn’t have as much consistent guidance as other kids in their peer groups, having parents that worked late.

The staff at BGCK would tell us how important it was to set a good example. These kids’ parents needed to make sure their kids had a safe place to do their homework and just hang out until they got home from work—something I think is very important. The price was also right for a lot of these families, which was also a big appeal for the parents who sent their kids there.

Everyone needs a person to push them in the right direction, and that’s why I think these kids are so deserving. BGCA is a safe place where kids can go after school, stay out of trouble, and get the appropriate guidance on their journeys in elementary and middle school. 

I felt like I was making an impact when the kids would tell me about their lives, and when I could give them advice that they could relate with. My favorite part was playing basketball with the kids (even though the eight-year-olds were 20 times better than me) because I could see that a lot of them were planning to continue playing in high school and were thinking about college. It was a great experience!

—Delaney Adams
Student Brand Ambassador, Kaplan National Student Brand Ambassador Program
University of Alabama

To learn respect and sportsmanship

I played baseball and flag football in the Boys & Girls Club league for about five years. Here, I not only learned how to play these sports, but I learned about the values of teamwork, hard work, and good sportsmanship. This league stressed those values tremendously, and made it a point to teach us at a young age how to be respectful athletes. 

I loved my time at the Boys & Girls Club because I met a ton of lifelong friends, and had a wonderful time playing sports in a safe, friendly environment. The values and lessons I learned from playing there are ones that I still carry with me throughout my life.

—Kenji Martinez
Student Brand Ambassador, Kaplan National Student Brand Ambassador Program
Florida International University

Start doing yourself—and someone else—some good today with the practice option of your choice. Don’t just practice; practice with a purpose with Kaplan and the Boys & Girls Club of America.


About Boys & Girls Clubs of America
At the more than 4,300 clubs across America, Boys & Girls Clubs provide a safe and engaging place for every young person who enters its doors to build the knowledge, skills and behaviors necessary to be successful. Learn more at

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