First-Year Integrated Studies Student Featured in Philly Inquirer
First-year Integrated Studies student Sebastian DeSimone '26 was featured in the Philadelphia Inquirer for his role in ensuring students with intellectual disabilities nationwide can compete in Division III athletics.
Sebastian fell in love with Track & Field and Cross Country when he began running in seventh grade. He joined the team at West Orange High School in New Jersey and continued to improve his 5K time during those years.
When searching for colleges to attend, Sebastian knew he wanted to continue running. At the time, students in non-degree seeking programs such as Integrated were unable to participate in collegiate-level sports.
Determined to continue his athletic career, Sebastian and his parents were not going to give up so easily. In partnership with Keith Mondillo, Director of Athletics, and Ariana Amaya, Program Director for Integrated Studies, Sebastian was able to successfully obtain a waiver allowing him to run on GMercyU’s Track & Field and Cross Country teams. Because of Sebastian’s perseverance, The NCAA’s Subcommittee for Legislative Relief approved a change that will make it easier for students with intellectual disabilities nationwide to compete in Division III athletics.
To read more about Sebastian’s journey, read the article on the Philly Inquirer.