Camp Exposure, powered by Vista Bank, held its NFL-style combine training camp for 100 underserved high school athletes at Highland Park's Highlander Stadium on July 8th - 10th, with personal and professional development sessions held at the Embassy Suites of Dallas Park Central. Athletes hailed from all over the DFW Metroplex representing Carter High School, South Oak Cliff High School, Desoto High School, Mesquite, Frisco, Skyline, Duncanville, Lancaster, Cedar Hill, Rockwall and more.
Founders Tyler Patmon, Lubbock Smith and Jeremiah Hatch strategically partnered with Vista Bank and host Highland Park High School, in order to further initiatives and opportunities for the athletes and the surrounding communities.
"It was essential for us to partner with Vista Bank and Highland Park High School because we share a similar dream to love our neighbors and serve our communities,” Camp Exposure Co-Founder Lubbock Smith said. “However, I also believe that there is something greater -- albeit deeper -- that has connected us to a dream bigger than our own: a vision of restoring and healing Dallas altogether, so that all communities can thrive. That starts here with these 100 young men and their families.”
Athletes were primarily recruited via invitation only by Smith, Patmon and Hatch to participate in the 3-day experience. Players received not only on-the-field training by some of the best in the NFL (Josh Hicks - Ezekiel Elliott's trainer and Chris Harris, Jr. - NFL Cornerback), but also off-the-field instruction spanning mental health awareness tips by global speaker and former NFL pro Jay Barnett, financial literacy by Vista Bank, personal branding advice, entrepreneurship, and insights on the business of the game by former NFL athletes and other business executives.
"At Vista Bank we have always sought to reinvest in the communities we are privileged to serve -- both with our time and resources," said John Steinmetz, CEO of Vista Bank. "Camp Exposure is one such partnership that shows the measurable impact of financial literacy, regardless of age."
"What made the impact of the camp even greater was the access that our student-athletes had to top business executives and professional athletes in order to network, create relationships and to glean off of," added Camp Exposure Co-Founder Tyler Patmon.
The camp culminated on Day 3 (July 10th) with a Sunday Funday family event with food, drinks, a bounce house and more. Thereafter, a high-energy 7-on-7 football tournament commenced featuring the Camp Exposure high school athletes, with the winning team vying for the 2022 championship belt and bragging rights until next year's event.
"I am so grateful to have been invited to Camp Exposure," said high school athlete Patrick Donaldson. "So much valuable knowledge was passed on to me from both speakers and coaches. I feel that I have grown so much as a person and as a football player in these three days. I am beyond blessed to have received this incredible opportunity."