Coach Pleasant Speaks Out Against Bullying
Winning championships is one of the main focuses throughout the year for Rochester College Head Basketball Coach Klint Pleasant. However, as a father of two, most people do not know that Coach Pleasant has another agenda that he tends to and feels very strongly about. On Friday, May 23, Coach Pleasant addressed a crowd of 850 middle school students at Van Hoosen Middle School as the culmination of Anti-Bullying week put on by the Van Hoosen’s girl scouts.
“Klint was absolutely incredible,” said Van Hoosen Middle School Principal Michael Behrmann. “He spoke for about 10 minutes at our assembly which was the culminating event of our Anti-Bullying week.”
Van Hoosen Middle School, part of the Rochester Community School District, runs several different types of assemblies each year, ranging from pep assemblies, to recognition assemblies, to ones such as the anti-bullying assembly that build character. “Coach (Pleasant) was incredible and delivered a powerful, yet simple message. He held our 850 middle school students spellbound for ten minutes,” said Principal Behrmann. “It was silent in our gym. He was clearly one of the most impactful speakers I have seen in my years. He truly connected with the students.”
Having a brother (Johnny Pleasant) who currently works in Rochester Community Schools and a mother who worked for the district, Coach Pleasant jumps at any opportunity to work with the kids in the same school district his two daughters attend, especially when the students are in the important years of development.
“I think talking to 6th, 7th, and 8th graders is a unique opportunity because they are at such a formative stage in life,” said Coach Pleasant. “I was very impressed that the students actually came up with the idea to have an anti-bullying week and wanted to end the week of awareness with a speaker.”
Bullying continues to plague many school campuses and is having a life long effect on those who are targeted. “We have had players on our team here at RC express past experiences with being bullied, so it is a sensitive topic even for college students, perhaps,” said Coach Pleasant.
“I know that bullying can be a real problem both physically and now even through social media. I hope we can do our part in spreading the word about how hurtful it can be. Hurting someone that is weaker than you is not power, it is actually a sign of being a coward. We stressed that real power is having the ability to harm someone, and then not harming him or her. We also stressed the importance of being a good friend and not being a ‘on looker’, but helping out victims,” said Coach Pleasant.
The Rochester College Basketball team will participate in several talks and camps throughout the summer and fall months that will get the RC basketball players involved in the local community. Stay tuned to the Rochester College Athletics website for further information.