Women's Lacrosse |
April 6, 2011
By Rachel Hundley
The life of a college student-athlete is extremely busy. They dedicate enormous amounts of their time at school to training and preparing for their respective sports seasons. When fans and other students watch these same athletes compete on the field or the court, it is easy to forget that part of being a student-athlete is also being a student, complete with classes to attend, papers to write, meetings to go to and all the responsibilities of any other student.
For the majority of college athletes, their sports careers will hit a wall when graduation rolls around. There are hundreds and thousands of NCAA athletes across the United States, less than one percent of gifted college athletes will ever go on to play at the professional level.
In contrast to many college students, student-athletes often miss out on time to go through the planning and experiencing of job opportunities. They are even put at a disadvantage from time to time due to stringent athletic schedules that compel them to miss employment-seeking opportunities.
Two University of Cincinnati student-athletes have found a great balance in their on and off the field responsibilities.
Jenn Doran and Cathy Hebert, two lacrosse players at UC, are striving to enhance their personal and individual achievements on and off the competitive field of play by bridging both their "student" lives and their "athletic" lives.
Doran, a junior from Venetia, Pa. is majoring in both communication and journalism, and Hebert, a junior from Lutherville, Md. is also majoring in communication. Neither had to look far to find a perfect fit for their career aspirations. Both Doran and Hebert found what they were looking for right in the UC Athletic Department - an internship with Tom Gelehrter, a sideline reporter for UC football broadcasts and UC's Director of New Media and Broadcasting.
"With lacrosse and schoolwork, this is really a great internship for us, because it's right here on campus and we do have tough schedules," Hebert said. "We try to do things whenever Tommy needs us and we're available and since it's in the athletic department, it's really easy to get there."
Gelehrter also hosts Bearcats Sports Weekly with football head coach Butch Jones and basketball head coach Mick Cronin on FOX Sports Ohio, and he has worked for the past nine years as a college sports broadcaster at both Cincinnati and the University of Akron, so Doran and Hebert know they are getting valuable experience and a great opportunity to prepare themselves for a career in the future.
"During football season we would go to practice with him and help film after practice," Hebert said. "We'd also help film press conferences, post-game press conferences for both football and basketball, press luncheons, and media availability."
Doran and Hebert have found interest in new media and broadcasting and they have enjoyed the exposure to the many different avenues of sports communication they have been involved in this year.
"This is definitely something I'm interested in," Doran said. "I like the new media aspect of journalism, and I like that I can work in both fields of communication and journalism."
For the student-athlete, life skills and career skills serve as essential capabilities to prepare them for daily life beyond college and athletics, and Doran and Hebert have taken advantage of the opportunity.
"Besides communication and public relations, my minor is in marketing, so this helps to show every aspect of the job," Hebert said. "It's really something we both like doing. Tommy knows so much about it, so it's really fun learning from him."