Lauren Broderick came to the University of Illinois as an uncertain freshman thinking she wanted to major in music education. However she was not sure this was the path she was meant to take. This all changed after meeting an 8 year old at Illinthon’s annual Miracle Family Tailgate in 2016.
Illinithon is a 12-hour long dance marathon at the University of Illinois every spring to raise money for children and families that are involved with Children’s Miracle Network, particularly St. John’s Children Hospital located in Springfield, IL. The organization raises funds year round to donate to the cause.
-tighten this up
Broderick formed a connection with Levi after playing spending time with him throughout the day. They played Spikeball together and discussed school and what they wanted to be when they grew up. Throughout the day Levi wanted Broderick to follow him and go wherever he went.
-show it and let the drama come out, add connection at end build up to it
At the tailgate someone wanted to interview Levi and he refused to sit still. Broderick was able to make Levi more comfortable and told told him she would sit with him and help him through the interview.
-why did someone want to interview him
Broderick talked with the rest of Levi’s family and they told her their story and she was able to relate to some of their experiences with her own. From then on Broderick and Levi have been best friends. They keep in contact with one another through Facebook where Levi’s mother and Broderick are Facebook friends. This allows Broderick to see updates on how Levi is doing and communicate with him as well. Levi’s mother will write messages on Broderick’s page from Levi and she will do the same back.
-find out conditions of his life
When looking at colleges Broderick originally applied planning to pursue a career in Child Life. However, once at Illinois she decided to study Choral Music Education. Throughout her first semester she was overwhelmed with her major and was questioning if it was the right career track for her. Meeting Levi made Broderick realize what type of difference she could make helping children.
Broderick is now a Human Development and Family Studies major and plans to be a Certified Life Specialist and hopes to work with kids like Levi. She said that Levi has taught her many different things, “…but above all, Levi has taught me that we are all stronger than we believe. Levi is truly one of the most resilient kids I’ve ever met; and he made me realize that if he can go through all that he does, and keep smiling through it all, then I can too.”
-Talk to Levi’s mother? Find out about his condition/disease
-talk to Levi
-has this relationship been important, what do they do, what does he think about Lauren Broderick
-went some place to help this kid and he ended up helping her
-try to broaden this
-what is a certified life specialist, how you can become involved