WHAT DO YOU LOVE ABOUT YOUR SPORT?
The girls I have met are some of my best friends and being able to go through college with a close group of friends has made it such a great experience. I probably would not be at Villanova if it were not for volleyball, and I am not sure that I would be in the nursing program either, so I am grateful for the opportunities here.
WHAT WOULD SURPRISE PEOPLE ABOUT YOUR SPORT OR HOW YOU PLAY IT?
It is a lot harder than most people think, and kind of underrated honestly. My friends who come to a game for the first time always tell me how fun it is to watch, so I feel like we don’t get enough credit because I think it’s really exciting to watch and play!
WHAT ARE YOU MOST PROUD OF IN TERMS OF YOUR PERSONAL OR TEAM ACCOMPLISHMENTS?
I am most proud of playing D1 in general; a lot of people who play all through middle school and high school work to play in college, and I am proud of myself for working hard to be here because it was definitely not easy. In terms of my personal life, I am most proud of being in the nursing program here because it is an incredible program, but very challenging.
DESCRIBE THE TIME COMMITMENT
In season (Fall) we are in 20-hour weeks, so Monday-Friday we have a practice/lift from 2-5 every day. We have 2 games every weekend from the end of August to November so we are typically travelling Thursday/Friday morning and getting back to campus late Sunday nights. Out of season (Spring) we are in 8-hour weeks until Spring Break, so I do not have practice every day, it is usually 3 times a week along with lift 3 times a week. After Spring Break, we go back into 20-hour weeks, and typically only have around 5-6 game weekends which are usually with local schools.
WHAT CHARACTERISTICS DOES SOMEONE NEED TO BE A SUCCESSFUL NURSING STUDENT-ATHLETE?
Time management skills are really important especially in season, it is so easy to get behind and not even realize it. It is also important to have good communication skills with professors, coaches, and your friends within the nursing program; along with that, don’t be afraid to ask for help! It is a big shift from high school to college, and as much as you want to be independent it is not a bad thing to ask for help. I really struggled in season while being a nursing student my first semester because I let my struggles pile up and did not speak up. Athletics has an amazing academic support program and the most caring advisors; Jenn Brophy my athletic advisor helped me with tutoring, study skills, and just being a great support person in general. Don’t be afraid to ask for what you need!
WHAT ARE YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGES AS A NURSING STUDENT-ATHLETE?
My biggest challenge is comparing myself to other nursing students. My schedule is really daunting and I struggle with managing studying on top of classwork and volleyball, and I catch myself feeling bad about not studying as much as others even though we are in different situations.
WHERE DO YOU FIND YOUR INSPIRATION AS EITHER AN ATHLETE OR NURSING STUDENT?
My inspiration comes from my family. My sister was an RN and unfortunately passed away in 2015, and the strength of my family inspires me to want to help others and follow in my sister’s footsteps.
WHAT DO YOU WANT TO DO WITH YOUR NURSING CAREER?
After I graduate, I want to move back to Lexington and hopefully become a Pediatric RN at University of Kentucky Hospital. Eventually I want to go back to school and get my Master’s degree.
WHAT ADVICE WOULD YOU GIVE AN INCOMING NURSING STUDENT-ATHLETE?
Enjoy what you are doing with academics and athletics and give yourself some grace. It’s easy to get down on yourself when things are difficult with sports or classes but remember that you worked hard to get here and you are going to do great things!