President of Keene State College Melinda Treadwell is not only an alumna of KSC but a former student-athlete as well. Treadwell spent her freshman, sophomore and senior years of her college career playing on the KSC basketball team between the years of 1986 and 1990.
Treadwell was recruited to play basketball during her senior year of high school and felt drawn to Keene when she first came to visit.
“I grew up in Maine and originally really wanted to go to college out in New York. But when I came to Keene, I just really fell in love with the area,” Treadwell said.
Treadwell said that being a student-athlete taught her a number of life lessons and good practices that she still carries with her today.
“Playing on the team was really helpful in giving me a sense of structure in my day-to-day routine. I learned a lot about how to manage my time well and create a schedule that worked for me,” Treadwell said. “I learned how to understand both victory and loss and about the importance of putting in the effort.”
Working on a team also helped Treadwell develop skills and build meaningful friendships she still cherishes.
“When you’re working in a team environment, you have to count on one another. We were all very motivating and supportive of each other and it was just a great environment to be in. I also learned how to be a leader and step up when necessary,” Treadwell said. “My teammates and I still get together today whenever we can.”
Today, Treadwell still sees many of these same values on the basketball team and other sports teams at KSC.
“When I watch the team play, and when I’ve worked with the team, they are brilliant and energetic and they look like they’re having fun together, which is a really nice reflection on what that energy was when I played,” Treadwell said. “We were intense, but we really enjoyed being together, and I feel that same energy when I’m with the team.”
Treadwell also said that she has seen the team hone their talent over the past couple of years and really come together.
“They’re doing really well this year and what I’m watching happen is that they’ve rebuilt. They’ve got some really great talent and they’re playing well as a team, not just as a group of individuals, and that’s really what I’d say about a lot of the other teams as well,” Treadwell said. “What I’m impressed by with all of our teams is we have outstanding individual contributors, but they hold together as a team. That’s a testament to our coaches.”
Treadwell said that she’s enjoyed watching the team develop and evolve over the years, from the time she was here as a student-athlete to today, watching the games as a faculty member.
“They have similar joy, camaraderie and friendship as we did. Really what I’ve seen is an intensification of the capacity for them to win, to close the deal,” Treadwell said. “That’s because they’ve grown. They had a really young team, so they’re now growing into themselves and they know each other and they’re competing at a higher level each year. I’ve been really proud to watch that.”
Rachel Vitello can be contacted