Student Blog The blog of William Woods University Undergraduate Students

25Jan/161

How Being a Catcher Sets You up for Success

Hello again, friends!

I'm coming to you on this fine, snow-covered morning to share a recent discovery of some keys to success in life. Specifically, how being a catcher on your baseball/softball team, while tough, is setting you up to be wildly successful.

Me catching a pitch behind the plate.

Receiving a pitch behind the plate.

1. Dedication

Being a college student in general requires a fair bit of effort. Now, pair that up with an in-season sport schedule and perhaps an internship or part time job, and you end up spending every waking hour of your day hustling in some venue or another. When you are a college athlete in season, your sport exists as if nothing else in the world really does. For those of us who really love the sport that we play, that's perfectly fine. Personally, I'm quite content spending my free time working out or practicing with my teammates. Being a catcher, you have to be prepared to be the first player to practice, and the last one to leave. This dedication teaches you not to take anything for granted, and that hard work is rewarded with success.

2. Relationships

Me jumping over the fence at the front of the dugout

Hurdling my way into the dugout to have some fun

The relationships we build may last a lifetime, teach us lessons, and make us happy. I'm sure that by now have heard the common phrase, "It's not what you know, it's who you know." To clarify, both matter equally in most instances. By being a catcher on your team, you learn to build relationships with the pitching staff and your teammates. You learn to trust them and be trusted by them. The catcher must be a player that the team can rely on, both on and off the field. Your ability to effectively build relationships and trust with others will serve you in other elements of your life.

 

3. Focus

When it comes time to accomplish a task, you must be focused to achieve your goal. Some goals are short-term (catching a pitch), others are medium range (winning a game), and the rest are long-term (winning a World Series title). Focusing on the small details in the game, as well as in life, will help you build a foundation for success in the future. Attention to detail is what separates brilliance from the mediocre in all of us. As a catcher, you will be involved in every play, you have to give every second of the practice or game your undivided attention.

Me getting a base hit in a fall scrimmage

Base hit swing in a fall scrimmage

4. Pressure

There will be times in life, as well as in the game, where a clutch moment approaches and your performance will be vital to the success or failure of the group as a whole. Learning to cope with the stress and pressure of will make you an effective leader and a reliable teammate. The more you are placed in the spotlight, in the biggest moments of the game, the more relaxed and capable of handling the moment you will be.

Remember, life is a game. Sit fastball and adjust.

Peace and blessings, friends.

-Dakota

4Jan/160

4 Tips for 2016

Hello!  I am taking time out of a busy holiday schedule to share ambitions for my last semester as an undergrad. There are a few goals to which I wish to dedicate my time.

I'm concerned about a huge life transition coming my way, as you may be. The time will fly as quickly as a hot fastball from the hand of an Owls baseball pitcher. Take time out to establish goals. Here are some of mine:

Man reading newspaper

Reading the news can be fun!

1. Read More & Stay up on Current Events

Reading is a great way to increase your vocabulary and knowledge base. When you read, you activate your imagination. It's like watching a movie filmed and produced in your own cranium! I love it, but I don't do enough of it. Read everything. Read the news, a book, song lyrics, a magazine. LEARN. That's goal #1.

2. Be Healthy

I play on the baseball team. Physical health is important to me. Recently, I have tuned in to the importance to mental and emotional well being as well. To kick off my new year, I will limit the number of unhealthy things I put into my body (yes, that means fewer chocolate chip cookies and I'm not too thrilled). This will be a great first step to athletic longevity. I want to be able to play catch with my children. As far as mental health goes, I will motivate myself to harness good thoughts and block negative ones. Emotionally, I will ensure that the people I surround myself with are a positive influence and that I talk about my feelings.

3. Go to Bed Early

That's right folks, you cannot get 6 hours of sleep a night and expect to feel great. I'll shoot for 9 hours of sleep a night, but 8 will be my minimum. This is going to require turning off the Netflix series I've been bingeing on, but also more motivation to get homework finished earlier!

Depiction of two circles that are not touching. One of them in labeled "Your Comfort Zone" the other is "Where the magic happens"

Get into the Magic Zone!

4. Graduate with a Job

This is the golden goose egg of the college graduate. People are always worried about what they will do after college. My advice on that front: get a job. It doesn't have to be the one that you'll hold for the rest of your life, but it might be! Find a door, open it, and see where you end up! That's my plan. We shall see what happens!

 

What are some of your resolutions for 2016?

Peace and blessings, friends!

-Dakota

2Dec/150

Dakota’s 5 Essential College Items

What's up, peeps?

Hope your holiday break was an absolute blast! I know my break was off the chain. I headed home to Montgomery City, MO for a few days with the familia and while I was there, realized that there are a few things that are a must have in my college career - here they are!

  1. My Own Bed
Full Size Bed

My super comfortable bed.

It is of the utmost importance to have a comfortable bed. After all, you will spend about a third of every day of your life sleeping (or at least you should). You'll want to be comfy!

2. My Entertainment System

Entertainment center - television and speakers

My television and surround sound, yes, I said surround sound. LOVE IT!

 

There are going to be times when life gets a bit hectic in college. However, for those moments when I get to slow down and relax, I like to do it in style. Having a great sound system gets me excited for my day in the morning and allows me to enjoy top quality entertainment at night!

3. My Work Space

Desk and laptop with posters of Marilyn Monroe, Yadier Molina, and the Red Hot Chili Pappers.

My decked out desk and wall. Always have to make the space around you authentically your style. This is mine.

I spend a lot of time doing homework and planning out events for my fraternity (Sig Tau) as well as listening to music. It's important to me to maintain a functional work environment that reflects my own flavor and style.

4. My Bathroom

bathroom sink and shower

Yep, that is a bathroom in apartment FF. It is a nice bathroom.

This is something we all take for granted. Using your own bathroom is a luxury. When I am at school I have all of the things I need to maintain my high level of personal hygiene. Using my own bathroom is essential and I miss having that space when it isn't around. Especially when you have a ducky bathroom rug (shown below).

Duck shaped bathroom rug

Ducky Floor Mat

5. My Friends

Some friends and myself hanging out.

My friends, basically family.

Making lifelong friends is potentially the best part of college. I have met so many great people who will be with me for the rest of my life during my years in college. Find those great people and hold on to them!

Hope you enjoyed! What is something you can't live without?

As always,

Love, Peace, and Chicken Grease.

-Dakota

 

2Nov/150

William Woods was the right choice for me!

Welcome!

This is Lisa, with the second part of my "origin story."  So, I began to research schools that would work best for me.

Small Size - I was looking for a small university.  I wanted a small student-teacher ratio.  With smaller classes, it would be easy to build relationships with my professors.  I already knew what it was like to be just a face among a sea of other faces, since I had already graduated from a large public state university.

William Woods University welcomes me with my name Lisa Laughlin in lights!

My name in lights!

At William Woods, each student has every opportunity to acquaint themselves with the faculty.  Every professor makes him- or herself available to students.  Every student has the option of reaching out and establishing a personal rapport with every instructor. This enhances the learning experience tremendously.  It is really valuable not competing with dozens of other students who also want individual time with an instructor.

 

The Right Offerings for Me - I was pursuing my dream of attending art school, but I also needed to temper that dream with the reality of competing in a Web 3.o world.  William Woods offers a BFA in both Graphic Design and in Studio Art, AND has quality Business and Management Information Systems (MIS) offerings. I could immerse myself in creative processes in the Kemper Art Center's studio art spaces. I could learn new skills in Kemper's Mac Lab with its state-of-the-art iMacs running Adobe Creative Suite software, like Photoshop, Illustrator, and InDesign.  And, I could learn the latest in web development, marketing, public relations, and entrepreneurship.

NASCAR auto racingCommute - The quality of my commuting time was also important to me.  I wasn't terribly interested in competing in the Daytona 500 every morning and afternoon. The commute on US63 between Jefferson City and Columbia reminds me of NASCAR restrictor plate racing.

Adding Central Missouri weather and transportation projects adds a unique "road course" flavor to the race. In contrast, the Fulton-Jeff City commute is a relaxing transition between my "day job" of being a student, and my other life in JC.

When the time came to select the school for me, the choice was obvious!

-Lisa