• June 16, 2017
    USC student-athlete recognized as Positive Athlete

    Jay Pollock Recent Upper St. Clair High School graduate Jay Pollock was named as a 2016-17 Positive Athlete Award Winner during an event on Tuesday, June 13, 2017, at the Heinz History Center. Recognized for the sport of wrestling, Jay is one of 29 students from throughout Western Pennsylvania who was honored by the organization for his character and leadership.

    The program, which is led by former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Hines Ward, celebrates athletes of high character who are a positive asset to their teams. An awardee is selected for each girls’ and boys’ sport including baseball, basketball, cheerleading, cross country, field hockey, football, golf, gymnastics/dance, ice hockey, lacrosse, soccer, softball, swimming and diving, tennis, track and field, volleyball and wrestling.

    A standout three-sport athlete, Jay excelled in football, wrestling as well as track and field. Most recently, he advanced to the PIAA state championships in May – finishing 16th in Pennsylvania in the shot put event.

    While his athletic accomplishments are significant, Jay’s achievements off the field are what set him apart from other student-athletes.

    “Not only is Jay a positive force on the field, he is also a young man with leadership qualities, a big heart and a natural ability to help others,” Peppy Pollock, Jay’s mom, said.

    Serving as a friend and buddy to special needs students has played a big role in Jay’s high school experience. He volunteered as a buddy at the Miracle League Field of the South Hills and as a mentor through the high school’s Best Buddy Club. In addition, he has participated in Upper St. Clair’s Partners in Physical Education class, a class of general education students who receive their own physical education credits while supporting students with special needs. Partners in PE students also participate in a variety of social activities throughout the year.

    “While all of these roles show Jay’s ability to lead by example and help others, perhaps the most outward example of Jay’s service to others was shown by his Eagle Scout Project,” Mrs. Pollock said. 

    Jay recently completed all requirements to earn the Eagle Scout Award, the highest level of achievement in Boy Scouts. All Eagle Scouts are required to plan and lead a project that benefits another organization or the community. For his Eagle Scout project, Jay – along with classmate Eric Lehman – planned an interscholastic soccer tournament that brought more than 100 students with and without special needs from 11 area schools together to participate in soccer drills and games. 

    Positive Athletes “The theme of the event, ‘Put Your Best Foot Forward’ had a positive vibe from the beginning to the end of the day,” Mrs. Pollock said. 

    Watch a video produced by CNN to learn more about Jay and his role as a Positive Athlete

    This fall Jay is headed to West Virginia University to study petroleum and natural gas engineering.

    Positive Athlete Pittsburgh was created as a movement to promote the benefits of positivity to student-athletes. To date, more than $50,000 in college scholarships have been awarded through the program, which generates over 1,000 nominees each year.

    According to the Positive Athlete website, positive athletes possess the following characteristics:
    1. Optimistic Attitude
    2. Encouraging Teammate
    3. Servant Leader
    4. Heart for Others
    5. Admits Imperfections
    6. Always Gives 100%
    7. Puts Team First