Returning to GoCrimson.com for a fourth season, "Around The Yard: Life As A Harvard Student-Athlete" explores life away from the playing fields for select Harvard student-athletes through their own first-person narrative. For a full list of blog entries, click here.
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November 8, 2017
Harvard means more to me than just amazing academics and competitive athletics; it is home.
When I was in high school I was very confused about where I wanted to go to school and play hockey. Both my dad and uncle played Harvard hockey, and they were very successful. When it came to my college decision, everyone immediately assumed I was going to Harvard, not taking into account anything else other than my family name. This made my college decision different than a lot of my teammates who were also deciding. There was a part of me that wanted to veer down a different path than that of my family, but there was also a piece that knew where I was meant to be all along. I was too afraid to admit to myself that it was okay to go where people expected me to go. At Harvard, there is more than just school and hockey, there is family and there is a lot of tradition that comes with being a Harvard hockey player. As a puzzled teen, I found myself watching home videos on a Sunday afternoon for a homework break. A video came on the screen of me in an oversized hockey jersey, trying to make my way around the rink. I couldn’t have been more than 3 years old. The camera zooms out and it was at Harvard, a rink that I learned to skate on, and continued to grow on throughout the years. A comfortable feeling came to me and that was the moment when I knew Harvard was where I was meant to be.
Now, I couldn’t be happier about the decision I made to come to Harvard and take on the challenge of being a student-athlete. My coaches, teammates, and fans make the Harvard Hockey experience unbelievably unique. We pride ourselves on being team first and that is a quality that has been passed down from teammate to teammate throughout Harvard Hockey history. It is something I hold dear to my heart. We have this one tradition that our program recently started called the HH Dinner. After one of our home games, Women’s Harvard Hockey alumni come for a dinner reception. It is one of my favorite nights of the year because you’re in a room full of people who have the same passion as you, a love and pride for Harvard Hockey tradition. The room is filled with endless laughs and friendships that last forever.
One of the most important things about being a student-athlete at Harvard is the support needed to succeed. You need support from your team, coaches, teachers, and most importantly, yourself. Being a student-athlete isn’t easy, but the environment around you makes it both valuable and enjoyable.
Even though Harvard has unlimited opportunities and possibilities for its students, the primary facet of this tremendous university that will remain closest to my heart when I graduate is the team environment and sense of home I feel when I am here. A sense of belonging and comfort that can never be matched.