The Rams hosted their first high school pep rally of the 2023 season at Bishop Mora Salesian High School in Boyle Heights. In celebration of Latino Heritage Month, the event featured music, giveaways and a recognition of the Salesian football team.
Rams Cheerleaders and mascot Rampage were in attendance to add to the excitement. Students cheered for their school's upcoming football matchup and were given "Vamos Rams" flags to remember the event and highlight the Rams' support for their school.
Salesian director of activities and counseling, Robert Burke, thought the visit had several positive impacts. "Having the Rams [here] was such an extraordinary experience for our high school, especially during Hispanic Heritage Month. It was an opportunity for our students to celebrate the significance of community and culture."
Students participated in self-led chants and expressed tons of excitement toward having the Rams present at their school. The Salesian band performed several songs and kept the crowd engaged. "I know first-hand that our students enjoy having fun. They live for these moments to experience what it means to have fun in high school," explained Burke.
Ghalee Wadood, Rams associate manager of high school football, mentioned the intention of the pep rally was to provide the school with an overall good time and experience. He was hopeful the students were left with a great Rams memory.
Burke thought the event also inspired the students. "It gave the students an opportunity to witness community involvement. It's also a great opportunity for our students to see how community involvement can lead into different career paths. I also feel it empowered our students to live for the moment and enjoy their time in high school."
Wadood said Salesian was the perfect location to kick off the high school pep rallies as the school has several ties to community efforts that the Rams support. The Rams recently released a short film that features one of Salesian's current football players who played in the North East Lincoln Rams, formerly known as the North East Lincoln Tigers, youth football program growing up.
The film, ‘Reaching New Heights: The Lincoln Rams Story,’ was released as part of the team's Latino Heritage Month celebrations and focuses on the Lincoln Rams program and the positive impact of the Rams, Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD), and Project Blue on the Boyle Heights community in East LA. The film was released the day before the pep rally and celebrates the ongoing efforts to improve the relationships between communities of color and local police, while expanding opportunity for youth on and off the field.
In December 2022, the Rams launched a partnership with the North East Lincoln Tigers, a youth football program coached by LAPD officers serving youth in the Ramona Gardens public housing development in Boyle Heights, that included renaming the youth football program the North East Lincoln Rams. As part of the partnership, the Rams fund all football components of the program and provide engagement opportunities, as well as develop programs that focus on character development and community service to expand their knowledge and ignite their passions beyond the playing field. For more information about the Rams' community outreach efforts, visit www.therams.com/community.