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University of Southern California
University of Southern California
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy
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News and Events
News and Events

Troy Camp kids return to forest years later — as USC students
July 19, 2019

They created unforgettable memories as children in USC’s mentorship program. Now these Trojans are helping the next generation of campers build confidence and make lifelong friends.

Chan in the Media Community and Partners Diversity, Access, Equity Faculty

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By Eric Lindberg / USC Today

Photo of Celso Delgado with Troy Camp participants

Andrew “Jupiter” Oropeza, front center, attended Troy Camp as a kid. Now the USC undergrad is giving back as a cabin counselor. (Photo/Courtesy of Celso “Grinder” Delgado Jr.)

They are powerful role models who bond with their campers over shared experiences and empower them to dream big about their future.

“That’s the key component of these success stories, that mentoring is happening everywhere in Troy Camp. That’s the special sauce of how all this works,” said former counselor Celso “Grinder” Delgado Jr., now one of Troy Camp’s faculty advisors and associate professor of clinical occupational therapy at the USC Chan Division of Occupational Science and Occupational Therapy.

What started more than 70 years ago as a weeklong trip to the forest for elementary school kids from USC’s neighborhood has grown into something much bigger. Now campers receive academic and mentoring support throughout the year as they progress into middle and high school. Thousands of children have made lifelong friends and gained confidence in their abilities through the program, which is provided to them at no cost.

Read the full article at USC Today.