Time management is a skill that college students learn to perfect in their own way in order to deal with everything that they have going on. With student athletes, managing their time involves juggling school, work, practice and games, along with finding time to fit in social activities.
Senior and captain of the women’s cross-country team, Kaley Mientkiewicz, said that her schedule is pretty busy each week. “For cross country our week plays out that we typically have harder workouts on Mondays and Wednesdays, then what we call easy days on Tuesdays and Thursdays. Friday’s are pre-meet practices, Saturday’s are meet days, and then Sunday’s we have nine a.m. long-runs,” Mientkiewicz stated. In addition to cross-country practices and meets, Mientkiewicz stated that she is taking 18 credits this semester for her chemistry major, as well as interning 20 to 25 hours a week at nextGen Telecom Services Group.
“I work for the nextGen Telecom Company doing fiber optic analysis and data management. I can work from home a lot which has been great, but I usually go in and work for the day on Fridays,” Mientkiewicz said, “I am taking four classes this semester and I also do two credits of chemical research with the organic chemistry professor.” Mientkiewicz stated that managing her time has become something that she is very good at because of how busy she is and that any free time is a reward that she looks forward to.
“To deal with any stress, I run. I love running besides for just racing. By the first mile into my run I can’t really visualize my planner or homework anymore so I am forced to forget about the stress and just enjoy what I love to do,” Mientkiewicz stated. She continued, “Stress happens to everyone but I try not to let it affect me because realistically, I know what my job is as a student-athlete here at Keene State and stress can effect me negatively in the classroom and running.” Junior and president of the women’s rugby club, Kiera Bisenius, also weighed in on her weekly schedule.
“I play rugby and hockey in addition to being a double major in secondary education and social science. I am also in the process of being inducted into the education honor’s society,” Bisenuis said.
Bisenius said that she has weekly practices for both teams with games on the weekends. In addition to practice and games, Bisenius said that she is also required to fulfill 20 hours of observation for her methods course throughout the semester.
In order to make sure that she gets all of her work done in-between practices, games and everything else that she has going on, Bisenius said that waking up early in the morning or spending hours in the library are the best methods for her to complete whatever she has to do.
While being an athlete may add some stress to her already hectic schedule, Bisenius said that sports keep her on track.
“If I didn’t play sports I would not be as focused as I am in school. My sports schedule keeps me on track and encourages me to get my stuff done on time,” Bisenius said, “I feel overwhelmed on some days but it comes with being a college student and playing sports.”
As players attempt to manage their time the best that they can, coaches also try and help ease their athletes’ hectic schedules.
Acting Head Coach of Women’s Cross-Country, Sarah Titus, said that she encourages her athletes to plan ahead.
“The advice I commonly give is to plan ahead, schedule a time to go to the library and to be sure that they are in an environment that they can do the best in,” Coach Titus stated, “I also encourage them to chip away at their work and begin to brainstorm an outline to make completing their assignments easier instead of starting from scratch.” Coach Titus also stated that when her athletes go on a run, that’s what they should be doing instead of stressing over all of their schoolwork.
“Don’t think about all the work you have to do or stress over an exam you have tomorrow. Relax — your brain needs a break. So enjoy your run,” Coach Titus stated. Chris Fecteau, head coach of cheerleading, also shared his methods in helping his athletes plan their time accordingly. “I think the biggest piece I am doing to help is by keeping the schedule light and not spring any events on them too short of a notice. Currently we are only practicing three to four days a week,” Coach Fecteau said, “However, once games and national season starts time management will become critical. I hope to establish study hours as well as an open communication concerning athletes’ grades and their success.”
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