Photo By: Mackenzie Gerry

Brock is home to 27 varsity sports teams, many of them competing in the Ontario University Athletics association (OUA); the highest level of competition for varsity athletics amongst Ontario universities. Across those teams, there are more than 900 student-athletes.

Being a varsity athlete already comes with enough pressure from the sport itself, however, being a student comes before being an athlete, which only further complicates things. With the proper goal-setting tactics like good time management, prioritizing healthy lifestyle habits, and the drive to succeed both as a student and athlete, athletes can find balance and success.

Here are some of the best tips and tricks some of my teammates and I have learned over the years.

Student-athletes may benefit from printing and organizing their syllabi. A detailed schedule of all due dates, class times, and readings can help you stay on top of things. Get your schoolwork done as soon as you get it. Do the readings the day they are assigned. As a student-athlete, you need to be on top of your schoolwork because, with all of the athletic responsibilities, it can feel like there is never enough time to get everything done.

Try to establish good relationships with all of your professors; let them know that you are on a sports team. If there are any classes that conflict with your athletic schedule, address them at the beginning of the semester and be sure to take advantage of all the tutoring and support services offered. Student-athletes are allowed a certain amount of free tutoring sessions provided by A-Z Learning Services. These services can be accessed in person at the A-Z learning office located in the Market Hall, or through your athletic academic advisor. Trying to maximize any idle time in between classes and practice. Brock has so many beautiful, well-kept study spaces accessible at all hours of the day, so why not take advantage of them?

Some of the most important lessons in life can be learned through time being a student-athlete. Time management is an incredible skill that is often learned, and continues to develop, during your time as a student-athlete. If you want to excel in school and sport, you must find a way to manage your time to the absolute fullest. 

Being a student-athlete instills the belief to never be afraid to fail because life will always go on. There will always be another game, there will always be another chance. Sometimes it is hard to stay positive and be grateful when things get hard, but being a student-athlete reminds you of how important it is to remain positive when things get tough. 

Most important of all, make time for your school work and be sure to have fun, and enjoy your time as a student-athlete at Brock.

Disclosure: Morgan Vidakovic was previously a member of the women’s rugby team for part of her time as an undergraduate student at Brock University.