Wheaton College Norton, Massachusetts

Christina Cannon ’13

Christina Cannon ’13Majors: Art history and studio art

Sport: Volleyball (captain)

Extra points: Equestrian club member

Success on the court: Success in volleyball doesn’t necessarily mean a starting position or perfect stats, but being a valuable member of the team and the program. A solid work ethic is the biggest contributing factor to being successful in my sport. It takes a lot of dedication.
Success in the classroom: It’s simply doing the best I can in whatever class I’m in.

Winning combination: The dedication that athletics has instilled in me has been a contributing factor in my academic success. Sometimes you may have a big exam the day after an away game, so you won’t have much time to study for it the night before, but somehow you need to make it work. It can be especially difficult for studio classes because the work is not something you can easily do on the bus. Volleyball forces me to manage my time, which of course, is so important when it comes to a Wheaton workload. Also, taking classes I enjoy and am interested in makes a big difference.

Kevin “Max” Swanson ’13

Kevin “Max” Swanson ’13Major: History with a European concentration (economics minor)

Sport: Soccer (captain)

Extra points: League of Historical Studies

Success on the field: I try to be a good student-athlete role model for my teammates because their success ultimately reflects on the team and me. The most important aspect for success has to be dedication. A day full of classes can be exhausting, but being able to play your heart out on the field, even when you are stressed and tired, is essential for success.

Success in the classroom: Academic success comes from the satisfaction of knowing I have tried my hardest and that, ultimately, I have learned something new from whatever I am studying. Having a coach who understands the importance of academics allows me to know that going to class and getting my work done is always supported.

Winning combination: Passion. If I were not excited by the work that I am doing on the field or in the classroom, I would find it difficult to get the drive necessary to succeed in either. Sometimes the hardest thing is time management. Between classes and soccer, there is very little time to get everything done. Finding the right balance between socializing and getting work done is something you need to learn early on so that you are not stressed out come the end of the semester.

Emily Davisson ’12

Emily Davisson ’12Major: Psychology

Sport: Volleyball

Extra points: Wheaton athletic mentor, Psychology Club advertising chair, IES Abroad student ambassador

Success on the court: Walking off the court knowing that I did everything in my own power to play my best and to encourage my teammates to play their best. The number of wins is a typical measure of success, but I don’t necessarily agree. If my team wins a game, but I know that I slacked off, I don’t feel as rewarded in the end. I am very grateful for my coach, Craig Letourneau, whose enthusiasm and constructive criticism have fostered my love of the game. I am also thankful for my professors understanding when I have had to occasionally leave class early for a match. I’ve also seen a few of them in the stands, which further illustrates the close relationships I have been able to make with them.

Success in the classroom: Just like in volleyball, academic success comes from using all of my available resources, such as professors’ office hours, tutoring sessions and study groups. I learned early on in my Wheaton career to reach out to my professors and that no question is a stupid question. Success in college is very different from success in high school, because in college you don’t have anyone breathing down your neck, making sure you get your assignments in. It takes an intrinsic drive.

Winning combination: An intrinsic will to want to succeed. Even if you are the best athlete or the smartest student, you have to want to use your talents. You have to have a competitive edge. Competition drives me in both my academics and volleyball. In volleyball, this is obvious. But, as I am starting to prepare graduate school applications, my competitive side comes out and encourages me to be the best student that I can be because I am competing for a spot at a school.

Savannah Geasey ’12

Major: Anthropology

Sport: Track and field, cross country (captain)

Extra points: Student Trustee-Alumnae/i Council (vice chair), resident advisor, Anthropology Club member

Success on the track or trail: Success in cross country/track means working to achieve goals you set for yourself. This can mean running faster and placing higher in a race, but for me, success also relates to goals off the track as well. Of course I value improvements in my performance, but success is also about fostering a productive team atmosphere and setting an example for underclassmen, both on and off the track. As a senior, seeing underclassmen achieve their own successes has been one of the most rewarding forms of success that I have experienced as a student-athlete. Personal dedication and hard work have definitely contributed to my success in cross country and track. These factors have allowed me to achieve a healthy and successful balance of my academic, athletic and social lives—a balance that has been critical to my success in athletics overall. On the track these factors have also allowed me to physically push myself beyond what I thought I was capable of.

Success in the classroom: Academic success is about putting your absolute best effort into your work. I have come to recognize that effort doesn’t always exactly correlate with a specific grade, but if I hand something in and know that I am proud of my work because I did my very best, for me, this is success. Academic success is also about using what you have learned to enrich your life and the lives of others. The skills and knowledge I have learned through my Wheaton education have allowed me to apply myself to many opportunities. Success is about applying your academics to your life outside the classroom. The same factors that have helped me be a successful athlete have helped me be a successful student—dedication and hard work. My professors really recognize dedication and hard work and have encouraged and supported me because of that.

The winning combination: Persistence has led me to be successful in both academics and athletics. In both of these realms you don’t always achieve your goals right away, but if you persevere and keep working toward them, it will pay off.