Balancing books, balls and college

By on September 29, 2004

Student athletes may find that they are busier than most students. College athletes have to balance work and class in addition to practice and games. With such busy schedules, teammates need good time management and organizational skills, as well as dedication to their school work and their team.

According to the Quinnipiac Athletics’ website, “Quinnipiac sponsors 21 varsity sports and is a member of the Northeast Conference in all sports except Men’s Ice Hockey (Atlantic Hockey), Men’s Lacrosse (America East) and Women’s Ice Hockey (CHA).”

“It’s stressful. It’s fun though. I think it makes me more apparent to time management. I think it makes me more on top of my studies,” senior Meredith Klein, public relations major and field hockey player, said about the addition of playing a college sport.

Playing a college sport also can put strain on the athlete’s social life in addition to their academic life.

“A lot of times I wish I was just a regular student. It’s a lot of sacrifice; I haven’t been able to go out one weekend (this year),” Klein said. “Sometimes I miss opportunities to go out with my friends and be a normal student. Then again, if I didn’t play a sport I’d be missing out even more.”

While some student athletes feel balancing it all can be stressful, others find it easy.

“I don’t think it’s hard at all because our coach is very lenient and allows us to miss practices for classes so we never fall behind,” baseball player Ari Kafka, senior political science major, said.

“We usually try to schedule classes in the morning so we can go to practice and games without missing classes. Teachers are very acceptant that we play sports and usually give us extensions for work,” Kafka said.

Assistant Athletic Director for Academic Support Holly Trexler is in charge of monitoring athlete’s grades and academic standing.

“We have really good student athletes, 60 percent of our athletes have a 3.0 or better.” Trexler said. “Our coaches do a good job at recruiting good students.”

Athletics holds the same standards as the University’s requirements for grade point average. Freshmen need to maintain a 1.8 or above, sophomores need a 1.9 or above and juniors and seniors need a 2.0 or above to play a sport.

Trexler monitors student athletes in numerous ways.

“Everyone with a 2.2 and below has to meet with me or my graduate assistant on a weekly basis for time management and learning strategies,” Trexler said.

“Every athlete with below a 3.0, cumulative, has to do power hours in the library,” Trexler said.

“Holly makes sure you are doing your work and going to class. She can help you if you need tutoring and set up appointments for you,” Kafka said.

Power hours are hours that the athlete must commit to studying or tutoring. An athlete can earn power hours in the library, athletic center or with a tutor in the Learning Center.

“Students that are not productively studying (sleeping being disruptive…) will be asked to leave and will not receive power hours,” according to an Athletic Department publication. Monitors keep an eye on athletes to ensure they are using their power hour times appropriately. If power hours are not completed there are penalties starting from a written e-mail to one game suspension.

These programs are set up in order to ensure a student is performing adequately in all aspects of college life.

“A lot of people need more time to spend on their work and with all the practices and games it is hard to keep up with your work. Usually after practice and games you are tired and would rather lie down and rest than do your work.”

Even though balancing every aspect of college on top of a sport can be time consuming, most athletes still enjoy doing it all.

“It’s so worth it. Playing on a division one field hockey team makes it worth it. I’ve been on it for four years and I’m dedicated to it,” Klein said.


About Nicole Silva