Belen Jesuit senior Joshua Barditch will take his long record of community service to John Carroll University in Cleveland. In addition to being awarded the Magis Scholarship for academic achievement.
Barditch also received the prestigious Arrupe scholarship, given to students that have excelled in leadership, service and commitment to social justice. Among the many service programs he has participated in, he is most proud of two that he helped form at Belen Jesuit — Belen Guardians and Shoe Me The Love. Belen Guardians is a service club formed by student-athletes who participate in sports activities with children with developmental disabilities.
A student athlete, Barditch played football for two years and baseball for five years, lettering in baseball as a senior. He also plans to play baseball at John Carroll University.
“Organizing sporting events and actually playing with these kids has taught me a lot about the spirit of friendship and competition, without all the drama that sports normally brings,” Barditch says, adding that he discovered Shoe Me The Love while cleaning the garage with his parents one afternoon. “They were going to throw away all these gently used men’s, women’s and kid’s shoes. I knew there was a better use for them.”
Barditch purchased large boxes from the local UHaul store, had them wrapped with Shoe Me The Love graphics and placed them at morning drop off locations throughout Belen Jesuit. In a few weeks, the boxes were filling up. With the guidance of ministry leaders at St. John Neumann parish, Barditch soon began distributing the collected shoes to local, less fortunate South Florida parishes. His younger brother, Jonathan, a sophomore, will try to continue the program next year.
Aside from graduating Belen Jesuit with honors, Barditch was also president of Quill & Scroll Honor Society and the editor in chief of Vincam, the school newspaper. He is in enrolled in the pre-MBA program in Sports Studies at the John Carroll Boller School of Business.
His goal is to be a general manager of a professional sports organization. He is already paving that path by working as an intern this summer in the at Florida International University athletic department.