If you ask any student-athlete if they enjoyed their experience playing in college, almost all of them will tell you yes without hesitation. At the same time, almost all of them will be thinking about the hardships they endured throughout their collegiate careers. From injuries to homesickness, every single student-athlete has gone through some sort of adversity. It’s how those players respond to that adversity that sets them apart from the rest.
My four years at Lafayette College taught me that you can never, ever give up. You can’t forget your worth as a player, and as an individual. That may sound cliche (because it is), but it’s absolutely true. There were times when I wanted to quit so badly, but I forced myself to keep going. I had people telling me that I wasn’t good enough to play at the Division I level – and for a time, I believed them. There came a point where I hated the game I’ve been playing my whole life.
Thankfully, I had an assistant coach my senior year who recognized that I was struggling. I like to call her my life coach because she really helped me turn my mindset around. With her help, I kept working on myself. I went to extra skill workouts, did more conditioning sessions, and spent countless hours in the library keeping my grades up.
In the end, all of my hard work paid off. I had a career season my senior year, which helped restore my passion for basketball. I earned multiple Patriot League academic honors, Dean’s List recognitions, and awards for my academic success within my two majors. With the help of another one of my great assistant coaches, all of this led me to Sport Changes Life. To have the opportunity to continue playing the sport I had re-found my love for, continue my education, and pass along what I’ve learned on my journey to the youth of Ireland was something I could not pass up. The hardships I endured as a student-athlete have shaped me into who I am today, and I’m proud of who I’ve become as a result.