Philadelphia Union has agreed to a multi-year partnership with Chester's own Widener University.
The school, which has an enrollment of nearly 6,500 students, will become the official University of Philadelphia Union, PPL Park and the Union's youth soccer partner, EPYSA and DYSA.
"Partnering with Widener University, a highly respected educational institution right in our backyard, was very important to both of us," said CEO & Operating Partner Nick Sakiewicz. "It's another great example of two Chester companies partnering to reinforce our commitment to the City of Chester. When we sat down and realized just how many synergies there were, including a strong shared commitment to the Chester community, we knew we had something special. The students of Widener University will reap the benefits of this partnership for many years to come."
"Widener University is excited to welcome Major League Soccer and the Philadelphia Union to Chester," said Widener University President Dr. James T. Harris III. "We look forward to working with the Union as a partner in Chester to continue the positive work that has been accomplished to date to revitalize the city economically and culturally. Go Union!"
The multi-tiered partnership that includes signage, television and web advertising spots not only aims to promote the growth of youth soccer in Chester but also to increase awareness of Widener University and its undergraduate and graduate academic programs.
"The presence of the Philadelphia Union will establish Chester as a soccer destination for the tri-state region," said Widener's Athletic Director Jack Shafer. "We look forward to working with the Union to develop youth soccer in the city and promote and advance this great sport into the future."