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In this episode of the podcast, we got the chance to speak with Evan Barczak, a Drexel University wrestler who has been an instrumental member of the Beat the Streets Philadelphia community for the past four years. According to Executive Director James Mangan, “His role as a lead mentor really helped shape a lot of this programming over the last couple of years.”
As a freshman at Drexel, Evan heard about the program from an older teammate and showed up to a pizza party event. He was immediately inspired by the student-athletes he met there. “The kids were just so excited about wrestling. They just wanted to talk about the World Championships or what was going on in college wrestling. And I was like, ‘Oh, this is awesome!’”
“And then just talking to the kids and hearing their stories and what they've gone through. And I was just like, ‘Man, I want to be a part of this.’”
Evan hit the ground running and hasn’t stopped since then. Despite a full slate of college courses and a Division I wrestling schedule, he managed to prioritize spending time at the mentoring center.
“If something's really important to you, you'll make time for it in the day. And this is something that's important to me. I want to get back to these kids and be there for them.”
Despite his rigorous schedule, Evan continues to draw motivation from the kids themselves. “Some of them had very hard lives,” he says. “And overcome very hard things , but they're just always in a great mood. They're super excited. I can't be upset. I can never complain about having a bad day.”
Evan graduated from Drexel in 2021 and is continuing his education to pursue an MBA. Here at Beat the Streets we are beyond excited that Evan will be with us one more term as a lead mentor.
“It's really nice to know that he's going to be around a little bit longer,” said James Mangan.