Mercy Student Receives ESPYS Recognition for Coaching South Bronx Youth

Mercy student with soccer team

Mercy College business honors student Ronny Delgado ’24 received an honorable mention for his leadership as a youth soccer coach in the South Bronx. As part of the televised 2023 ESPYS Awards presented by ESPN, Delgado and 12 other young adult leaders were highlighted for their efforts in using sports to improve their communities. 

Delgado, who was born in Ecuador and moved to the U.S. at the age of 16, began playing soccer as a young boy. “My parents both worked very hard for 13 years so our family could come to America,” said Delgado, who recalled his early years in the U.S. as tough. “I was very shy and had to adapt to a new language and a new culture,” he explained.

Delgado acknowledges parents like his own, who sacrificed everything so their children can succeed. “Sometimes kids don’t realize the effort their parents have made,” he said. Of his own parents, he added, “They are my inspiration, and I want to make them proud.”

Soon after his family settled in New York, Delgado began volunteering at South Bronx United (SBU), a nonprofit organization that promotes educational achievement, health and wellness, and character development through sport. As a coach and mentor to young athletes, many of whom endured similar disadvantages and challenges, he said, “I try to be a role model.”

This fall, Delgado will graduate with his bachelor’s degree and begin working on his master’s in public accounting. He credits SBU with guiding him through his application to Mercy and is grateful for the leadership skills he’s gained at college, especially those that serve him well as a devoted youth coach and mentor.

Learn more about Ronny's incredible story.