Athletes are often thought of as one-note.
Yes, athletes play sports, but what many forget is that they’re also students and that academics are a priority. At Kent Place, it’s emphasized that if you choose to participate in athletics, you’re a student-athlete and not an athlete-student. This philosophy not only helped me focus in on my studies, but also influenced my decisions for my future after high school.
The academic schedule in the Upper School was strategically created to enable students to be scholars while participating in all of their extracurricular activities. With a daily balance of class and free periods, I was easily able to prioritize my work and optimize my time before heading to practice. Kent Place instilled in me the ability to balance athletics and academics, which made clear that choosing a Division III institution was the best option for both my passion for softball and a degree in health sciences.
At Kent Place, I learned that being a scholar-athlete comes with the responsibility to keep communication open and to take the initiative when it comes to schoolwork. Several times during softball season, I had to contact my teachers about taking tests or handing in assignments early, because disregarding your work for athletics was never an option. And every time, the teachers allowed me to do so — and expressed appreciation that I was proactive about getting in touch with them. The relationships between academic and athletic faculty with their student-athletes is very special at Kent Place, and have helped me feel more comfortable with handling my schoolwork and athletics in college.
If not for the great experiences I had as a scholar-athlete at Kent Place, I believe I’d have had a much harder time acclimating myself to being a collegiate student-athlete. First semester of college is a challenge for anyone, no matter the circumstances: difficult courses, high-level athletics, dorm living, social life, and, naturally, being away from home. Despite that, I felt prepared to navigate it all. I knew that amid these new elements, I’d be occupied with three classes and two practices a day, but I’d make it a priority to plan and organize my time. With this skill already mastered during my time at Kent Place, I had one fewer challenge to worry about.
The other aspects of college life took a couple of weeks to figure out, but I had learned through experience that everything is manageable.