Published: Tuesday, October 19, 2010
Updated: Thursday, July 5, 2012 15:07
It is often the case that university students get comfortable within their daily routine and courses, often not realizing the opportunities available through determination and networking.
Nico Loureiro, a fourth year Sports Management major, is an exception to the above statement, as he has taken his educational foundation and expanded it within the sport he loves, obtaining employment with Basketball Ontario.
A former high-school basketball standout and current entrepreneur, Loureiro's love for the game began at a very young age back in his home country of Argentina. Once his playing career ended, he realized the next viable option for his education and future career should be within the sports realm. In 2007 he enrolled in Brock's unique Sports Management program and has taken full advantage of his educational experience.
Using a network system created during his playing days within Basketball Ontario, Loureiro gained the position of Manager/Strength Trainer of the U-15 Ontario boys' basketball team. Once in the system, he was given the position of international ambassador of Team Ontario. His first accomplishment came when he applied for participation of Team Ontario in an international tournament in Argentina. Through Louriero's hard work and dedication, team Ontario was able to gain entry, even though they are not an international team.
Loureiro took it upon himself to ensure the participation of the provincial team in this international tournament contacting the organizers and persuading them to let Team Ontario participate. Being a former player, he realized the benefits to the players and organization would be exponential.
"We got the opportunity to play against international teams, on professional courts and against the best young players in the world," said Loureiro. "I knew that this experience would be beneficial to the development of Canada as an emerging basketball nation."
The tournament took place over the summer in Buenos Aires, in preparation for the FIBA competitions, and Team Ontario performed incredibly, knocking off every national team at least once. They also defeated Loureiro's home nation Argentina, currently ranked number one in the world, by twenty points.
Loureiro believes that his journey would not have been possible without the support and aid of his education.
"My educational experience so far here at Brock provided the foundation for me to gain access to a prestigious organization and follow my childhood dream of becoming involved in professional basketball," said Louriero.
"One of the most beneficial courses I was enrolled in which helped me in my position was Event Management, as it provided me with the logistical tools to organize the involvement of the team in this prestigious tournament."
Loureiro believes that opportunities are present everywhere and encourages his fellow Brock students to get involved while they are still in school, as it is never too early to gain practical experience and try different career avenues.
"Take every opportunity you have, make the most of it and find a way to set yourself apart - the rest will come on its own," said Loureiro when asked on his advice to fellow Brock students.
Clearly Loureiro has developed the right skill set and attitude for success outside of the university walls. He believes students are doing themselves a disservice by ignoring the many potential opportunities that are available for them to become involved within their area of study. His story is a great example of how one can expand academia into a practical application they thoroughly enjoy.
For students who have been running through the motions with the blinders on, remember to take a minute to evaluate your potential opportunities. You may be pleasantly surprised by what is waiting behind door number one.