‘Tis the season to be jolly! Well, sort of. We can be jolly after the stress of final exams, projects and papers pass. The time has come for students to make that conclusive push through the last week of the semester. During this last stretch, schedule balance and organization skills are key elements to a successful week of finals.
The Springfield College student population should be transformed into one, big poster child when talking about time management, seeing as 70 percent of the college is defined by the title of “student-athlete.” The responsibilities that come with being only a student or only an athlete are enough to drive a person crazy, but the combo can either make or break your college career.
Springfield College women’s swimming and diving senior captain, Kelsey Poole, is someone who can attest to the complications and obstacles that come with being a student-athlete. Poole is a Rehabilitation and Disabilities Studies major, which is just as, if not more difficult, than it sounds.
“I always make sure I have my work done for the week before I have a swim meet,” Poole explained. “It’s smart to get everything done ahead of time because the last thing a swimmer wants is added stress from schoolwork when we are supposed to be focusing on competing.”
Swimming since age five, Poole learned the techniques to keep an organized schedule rather quickly. However, as we all know, the work load as a college student is significantly heavier than that of a high school student.
“Kelsey and I have been teammates from the beginning of our first year at SC. She has been incredibly supportive of everyone on the team and has a fantastic work ethic. [We] have had a few classes together, and we find that it is best to be organized and stay aware of all of our assignments and their due dates,” said fellow women’s swimming and diving captain, Jen Thompson. “She completes all of her work and practices at different times throughout the week in order to get everything done, to maintain her commitment to education and swimming. It isn’t easy to balance everything, but keeping in contact with our professors and staying organized is crucial.”
It seems like Poole has almost perfected the art of multitasking. Not only is she a scholar in the classroom, but her performance in the pool is extraordinary. She excels in the butterfly stroke and the backstroke.
This past weekend the Springfield women’s swimming and diving team commanded the pool in Ithaca, N.Y. with an overzealous performance. Poole’s 400 medley relay team swam to a second-place finish with a time of 3:55.48.
In a meet against Wheaton College and Keene State, Poole and her 200 medley team captured first place with a time of 1:51.80.
Poole’s achievements gained the recognition she was hoping for when she was elected captain this year.
“Kelsey is one of the finest individuals I have coached in my 25 years here. She is a wonderful person that has developed into a great leader and a tremendous captain,” praised women’s swimming and diving head coach, John Taffe. “I am one to stress to our captains that the best quality you can have is to just be yourself. Kelsey epitomizes that and has developed a great rapport with everyone on the team and the coaches. She doesn’t try to do too much, but is always there if I need something or members of the team need help or guidance. She has excelled academically as well and is a model for the definition of the term ‘student-athlete.’ She will be hard to replace in the future.”
A solid relationship with a coach is crucial in the journey to success. Having that sturdy support truly gives student-athletes the necessary means to achieve.
“Our coach always reiterates staying on top of our workload. On occasions such as the weekend we just spent in Ithaca, N.Y. for a three-day invitational, it’s smart to get ahead,” Poole said. “When finals time comes around, I find myself getting stressed out really easily, so it’s nice to let it all out during practice. It gives me a break from studying.”