Renee is passionate about track & field, and and she hopes to join the team at her future college. Read on to learn about her journey and advice for other student-athletes!
Many student-athletes dream of playing a collegiate sport. Growing up, all I wanted to do was sing, dance, and perform. I played some sports, but I found more freedom in who I am “on stage.” Since my main passion was music, I joined concert choir in middle school. While in choir, I competed on my school’s volleyball team and twirled baton with my cousin and sister. Sports helped keep me focused, but I never really found a sport I loved until my freshman year of high school.
By that time I had been involved in many extracurriculars, including soccer, gymnastics, volleyball, baton twirling, choir, and Girl Scouts. Freshman year I was involved in drama, mock trial, Girl Scouts, and track & field. I fell in love with track before the season even started. I was extremely nervous since I was still one of the “newbies,” but I made many friends who supported me all four years in high school. I competed in multiple events, but my main event was the high jump. I also competed in long jump and pole vault, and I hope to learn how to triple jump.
All I wanted was to compete alongside my teammates and best friends, but sometimes life got in the way. My junior year I took an extra class through Mount San Jacinto College to get ahead of my class and graduate early. The class was every Thursday after school, and track meets were also on Thursday. I had to decide between track or school, and I chose school. My senior year I graduated a semester early. I practiced with everyone for a little bit while I could, but the athletic director told me I couldn’t compete since I was no longer considered a student. I was going to help coach pole vault, but work got the better of me.
Once I chose the college that fit best for my major, I researched their sports teams. Palomar College has a track team, so I decided to contact the track coach to find out what I would need to do to be on the team. She replied and gave me all the information I need about practice, telling me how happy she is to meet me and hopefully have me on the team. Track is my passion, so I’m researching everything to be able to compete in college. I will be commuting to school with my sister, so the only obstacle I have to overcome is finding a ride to school and practice, which shouldn’t be hard since there are many rideshares and buses near me.
I once read somewhere that “Excellence is never an accident; it is the result of high intention, sincere effort, intelligent direction, skillful execution, and the vision to see obstacles as opportunities.” If you dream of becoming a college athlete, don’t let anything stand in your way. Dreams don’t become reality without drive and a vision for the future. I know it’s hard, scary, and nervewracking, but if you don’t try, then you’ll regret it later in life.