26.2: The Last Mile

April 16th is the day of reckoning for many Harvard Business School students as they try to go the “Last Mile” and complete the 105th Boston Marathon. Heartbreak Hill, the steep ascent at mile 17, may prove to be a tougher challenge than the “Arctic Survival Test.” Where are those Naval Pilots when you need them for an airlift? I am not sure where a pair of shoes and a fighting spirit fall in the ranking of items.

Of all the HBS students running the Marathon is a special “Group of Six.” These six runners: Bill, Erin, Kerry, Kate, Cyrus and Beth, have joined forces and made a commitment to raise money for the West End House Boys and Girls Club of Allston/Brighton.

The West End House has been “a positive place for kids” for nearly a century. The Club was originally established in 1906 by James J. Storrow to provide immigrant youth a place to meet for educational and athletic activities. Today, the West End House annually serves 1,200 youth that live in the community. Many of these children are from lower income households and live on governmental assistance. The Club offers a wide range of youth development activities including tutoring and computer literacy, swimming and basketball, fine arts and drama, a Teen Club, and drug/alcohol and violence prevention programs. At the West End House, staff and volunteers are dedicated to inspiring and enabling youth from all backgrounds to realize their full potential as productive, responsible, and caring citizens.