Thursdays at Mott Three women's gymnasts visit patients on a weekly basis

(L to R) Cailee Hills, Nicole Artz and Paige Zaziski with a Mott patient

"HONESTLY, IT’S ONE OF MY FAVORITE THINGS THAT I DO HERE AT THE UNIVERSITY. I THINK DOING SOMETHING LIKE THIS CREATES A MORE WELL-ROUNDED PERSON AND IF YOU’RE NOT GOING I HIGHLY RECOMMEND IT. IT’S A VERY REFRESHING BREAK FROM SCHOOL AND YOUR SPORT. YOU APPRECIATE WHAT YOU HAVE IN THE MOMENT AND KNOW THAT SOMEONE ELSE OUT THERE DOESN’T HAVE IT AS GOOD AS YOU BUT YOU HAVE THE ABILITY TO HAVE AN IMPACT ON THEIR LIVES." - NICOLE ARTZ
"WE GO IN AND THERE ARE FOUR OR FIVE DIFFERENT FLOORS THAT YOU CAN GO TO. WE GO AROUND IN GROUPS OF FOUR OR FIVE PEOPLE AND THEY TRY TO SPLIT UP THE SPORTS TO GET A GOOD VARIETY FOR THE KIDS. MOST ROOMS YOU GET TO GO IN AND INTERACT WITH THE KIDS, TALK TO THE PARENTS, TAKE PHOTOS WITH THEM. WE ALSO GIVE THEM SIGNED HATS. WE JUST TALK TO THEM AND TRY TO IMPROVE THEIR DAY A LITTLE BIT." - CAILEE HILLS
"JUST RECENTLY I’VE GONE TO THE SAME FLOOR AND I’VE SEEN THE SAME COUPLE KIDS SEVERAL WEEKS IN A ROW. IT’S EXCITING TO SEE THEM AGAIN BUT THEN IT’S ALSO SAD BECAUSE YOU WANT THEM TO GET OUT OF THE HOSPITAL. I KNOW THERE’S A LITTLE BOY FROM MY HOMETOWN THAT I GET SO EXCITED TO SEE. THERE’S ALSO THE PEOPLE THAT RUN THE PROGRAM, MICHIGAN FROM THE HEART, THAT I LIKE KEEPING UP WITH AS WELL." - PAIGE ZAZISKI
"I THINK IT GIVES THE ATHLETES A GREATER APPRECIATION FOR WHAT WE HAVE AND LIFE IN GENERAL. AS FAR AS THE KIDS, EVEN IF THEY’RE NOT MICHIGAN FANS I THINK THEY ALWAYS HAVE A GOOD TIME BEING ABLE TO TALK TO PEOPLE. IF YOU’RE STUCK IN A HOSPITAL ROOM ALL DAY I CAN’T IMAGINE IT BEING THAT FUN. IT’S JUST REALLY FUN TO SEE THEM GET EXCITED ABOUT SOMETHING." - NICOLE ARTZ
"I ENJOY SEEING THE KIDS’ FACES LIGHT UP WHEN YOU GO IN. I MEAN WE DON’T THINK OF OURSELVES AS ANYTHING SPECIAL BUT COMING IN AND HAVING THEM BE LIKE "OH, YOU’RE A MICHIGAN ATHLETE" THEY JUST LOOK UP TO YOU AND IT’S SO AWESOME. IT JUST SHOWS YOU HOW FORTUNATE WE REALLY ARE." - CAILEE HILLS
"ONE TIME WE GOT TO SIT DOWN AND READ WITH A LITTLE GIRL, THAT WAS PROBABLY ONE OF MY FAVORITE THINGS. IT’S COOL TO SEE SOME OF THE KIDS WHO ARE REALLY FOCUSED ON LEARNING AND WANT TO BE REALLY SMART, I LIKE THAT. I DON’T REALLY THINK OF MYSELF AS A ROLE MODEL, I JUST LIKE TO INTERACT WITH THE KIDS AND SET A GOOD EXAMPLE. I THINK THAT’S ALWAYS REALLY IMPORTANT." - PAIGE ZAZISKI
"SOME PEOPLE DON’T REALLY KNOW WHAT GYMNASTICS IS, SO SOMETIMES WE DO CARTWHEELS IN THE HALLWAY AND THEY THINK THAT’S PRETTY COOL. THEN IT’S FUN BECAUSE THE OTHER ATHLETES WILL START TO DO IT TOO. THE OTHER WEEK WE WERE WITH FOOTBALL PLAYERS AND THEY WERE DOING CARTWHEELS IN THE HALLWAY WITH US AND THE KIDS WERE JUST GIGGLING AWAY. THEY THOUGHT IT WAS SO FUNNY." - NICOLE ARTZ
"I’VE ALWAYS WANTED TO GO INTO ORTHOPEDICS WHICH HAS KIDS AND ADULTS BUT I’VE ALWAYS STEERED MORE AWAY FROM THE PEDIATRICS SIDE. NOW I’M KIND OF OPEN TO IT. IT’S JUST COOL TO BE IN THAT SETTING AND KIND OF SEE HOW THINGS WORK. IT’S A GREAT VOLUNTEER OPPORTUNITY FOR ME." - CAILEE HILLS
"SOME DAYS ARE BETTER THAN OTHERS. I REMEMBER THERE WAS ONE TIME THIS LITTLE BOY WHO IS PROBABLY LIKE TWO AND COULDN’T TALK. HIS MOM WAS HOLDING HIM AND WE COULDN’T GO IN THE ROOM BUT HE WAS AT THE DOOR AND HE JUST LOOKED LIKE HE WAS MISERABLE. I GOT HIM TO SMILE ONCE AND THAT MADE ME SO HAPPY. SOME PEOPLE SAY MOTT ISN’T FOR EVERYONE, BUT IT DEFINITELY IS FOR ME." - PAIGE ZAZISKI

More photos from Mott Visits This Fall

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Michigan from the Heart

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