By JENNIFER AYALA
When a season begins for student-athletes, times can often get tough.
Besides practices and game days, student-athletes are also required to keep their grades up to a certain grade point average. This can be challenging still for some who continuously travel for games that are hosted away, which require being away from classes for a long period of time.
To be a successful student-athlete, it is important to manage one’s organizational skills. That means not only staying in good shape physically, but also mentally and emotionally. It is important to stay on top of grades as well as including time for a social life.
Game days and practices often leave their bodies exhausted, and the constant number of trips takes a personal toll. Although it may seem athletes are all about their sports, they also want to maintain high marks while still having time to enjoy with their friends.
“I would advise people to not overwhelm their schedule. Start to organize with practice hours and adapt other activities,” said Carolina Cuevas, sophomore on the Women’s Tennis team. “My biggest challenge is how to say no to people. I accept all kind of invitations and at the end I never make it on time. I have to set my priorities before I make plans.”
When it comes to playing on game days, athletes must be eligible to play by maintaining good grades. If not, then a student-athlete can potentially lose everything they have worked for.
“Study first, then enjoy life,” said Lucas Orrellana, sophomore on the Men’s Soccer team. He has lived by this saying ever since he became a student-athlete.
As a student-athlete, it feels like there is not enough time available in the day. With the hours put in during practice and in the classroom, the idea of managing both can become extremely frustrating at times.
“Always have a prepared schedule and try your best to be on top of it,” said Russell Wilson, senior on the Men’s Basketball team. “For me I go to class, then practice and after that I have to organize my time. Study hall helps me for exams and homework. Academics is the biggest challenge for me, especially in season.”
But after all, Wilson feels really thankful for the opportunity to play.
“I’m really thankful with Coach [Jeff] Price and the school for the opportunity to play and get a degree,” said Wilson.
All students athletes would agree that the labor is one of love, as it doesn’t get much better than earning your degree while playing the sport you adore at the same time.