Jan. 5, 2009
He doesn't recall the title of the book, but for Rice student-athlete Rodney Foster the message it shared is still fresh in his memory as he tells about the day spent last fall just blocks off the Rice campus reading to students at Poe Elementary.
"I can't remember the title but I remember the premise of the story," Foster said. "It was a baseball story in which a child was small for his age and the big kids wouldn't let him play with them. But in the end, his dad talked the team into letting him play and he ended up hitting a game-winning home run. It just had a good message about how everyone can be productive."
When it comes to the experience of reading to elementary-age kids, it may be difficult to distinguish who got the most from the outing.
"I always wanted athletes to come talk to me when I was younger, so it was big for me to read to elementary-age kids," Foster said. "And you could just tell by the gleam in their eyes that they really enjoyed it. You don't know how much of an impact you have until a parent comes up to you before or after a game and says they heard about you reading to their child's class."
Following the outing to read to students at Poe Elementary, Foster continued his relationship with the school, returning to speak to students.
"I had an opportunity to go back and talk to the kids just about doing well in school and keeping their grades up," he said. "It was a fun talk and I think it was beneficial."
Foster begins his senior season as a member of the Rice basketball team. For the past three years he has also been involved in visiting with and spending time playing with young patients at TIRR Memorial Hermann Hospital located in the Texas Medical Center.
"We have spent time every year at the hospital just trying to brighten up the young patients' days by doing stuff like playing video games and other board games with them," Foster said. "We always want to give back to our community. There are people less fortunate than we are and we just want to do anything we can to help make others' lives better."
Like so many other collegiate athletes, Foster has aspirations of continuing his playing career, possibly oversees after he graduates. But he knows the education he has received at Rice has prepared him well for his goals when he trades in Nike high-tops for a pair of leather dress shoes. Following his playing career, he is interested in pursuing employment in investment banking or the stock brokering field.
"Growing up 30 minutes from here (in Katy), I couldn't have picked a better school to attend," he said. "You have the best of both worlds. You have great academics and great athletics. You receive a first-class education at Rice and you make so many contacts. People genuinely care about you here."
And that is why Rodney Foster is one of Tomorrow's Leaders.
Game Day Fan Central: Rice hosts Charlotte on...
11/27/2015 - Football - Rice wraps up the 2015 season on Saturday when the Owls host Charlotte at 2:30
Men's Basketball Hosts UC Riverside
11/26/2015 - M. Basketball - Rice welcomes UC Riverside this Friday, Nov. 27, to Tudor Fieldhouse. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT.
Women's Basketball Returns Home to Host Harvard
11/27/2015 - W. Basketball - The Rice women's basketball team will host the Harvard Crimson on Saturday evening in the Owls' second home game this season.
Rice Earns First Win of the Season with 92-84...
11/25/2015 - M. Basketball - Rice placed six players in double-figures on its way to picking up its first win of the season, 92-84 over Lamar, Wednesday night at Tudor Fieldhouse.
Men's Basketball Closes Roundball Showcase...
11/24/2015 - M. Basketball - Rice finishes out the Roundball Showcase this Wednesday, Nov. 25, when it hosts Lamar. Tip-off is scheduled for 7 p.m. CT.
Owls Rally Falls Short at McNeese St.
11/25/2015 - W. Basketball - Rice sophomore Shani Rainey registered the Owls' first double-double of the season with 17 points and 11 rebounds but turnovers proved costly in a ...
Baseball Announces Latest Signing Class
11/24/2015 - Baseball - The Rice baseball program has signed ten new standouts in the early period who will join the team for the 2017 season, head coach Wayne Graham...
Owls Head to McNeese State on Wednesday
11/24/2015 - W. Basketball - The Rice Owls make their third appearance away from Tudor Fieldhouse this season on Wednesday when they face the McNeese St. Cowgirls of the...
- Top Videos /
- Online Store