Meredith College Basketball Video – Lauren McDonald

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Getting Inside Meredith College Athletics – Lauren McDonald

I know that before visiting Meredith and understanding division two and division three athletics, I had no idea that I could continue participating in athletics on the collegiate level. Most people think to be a college athlete you have to be recruited and given a major athletic scholarship to a huge college but that isn’t always how it works.

In my opinion, division three athletics gives you the opportunity to enjoy the best of both worlds. You are able to enjoy your college experience with balance and routine. The basic foundation of dedication, commitment, competitiveness and skill are all expected and carried out in division three athletes, but at the same time, being a college athlete does not take over your life. While being an athlete is a main priority in division three, you are still able to concentrate on academics and lead a balanced social life. Here are some pictures of some of my experiences to show you what I mean when I say being an athlete at Meredith gives you balance.

Preparing for a picture with some teammates after a race

Me and MY HERO! (My mom)

Finishing at XC Regionals in Memphis 2010

Throughout the rest of my time here at Meredith, I would like to give you a taste of what it is like to be involved in collegiate athletics. Meredith offers six division three sports including basketball, softball, soccer, cross-country, tennis and volleyball. We are a part of the NCAA and USA South Athletic Conference which is made up of ten other division three schools.

In the fall semester cross-country, soccer and volleyball are in their actual competitive season; while tennis, basketball and softball are in preseason workouts, and vice versa during the spring season. In these last few months of the spring athletic season, I will do my best to give you a feel of all six of the sports that Meredith College has to offer and what it is like to be a part of them, whether they are in pre season or their actual conference season.

While each sport at Meredith has different rules, different objectives and different goals, each team at Meredith has a similar frame of teamwork and work ethic. I hope you enjoy this!

My Meredith Experience – Lauren McDonald

Hello Ladies!! My name is Lauren and I am a senior at Meredith, I am set to graduate this coming May, with a degree in Mass Communications. After graduating I would like to start a career in sports broadcasting. Before coming to Meredith, an all-girls school was the last place that I thought I would find myself for college. In high school I was very involved I played several varsity sports including track, cross-country, volleyball, and cheerleading. My high school was huge with over 2,500 students needless to say, I definitely thrived in “the big” atmosphere. When looking at colleges my heart was set on NC State, but when I found out that I had been wait listed, and wouldn’t know if I got in or not until the first of August, I had to consider other options. (Still an all-girls school….aka a school with no boys, no football games, and no sororities/fraternities was OUT OF THE QUESTION.) I was accepted to  ECU, UNC Wilmington, UNC Charlotte, College of Charleston, and even Ohio State but I was still not set on any of them.

All throughout the end of my junior and all of my senior year of high school I received flyers and letters about Meredith but I never really paid any attention to them. After hearing great things about Meredith my mom encouraged me to apply just for the heck of it, I told her that I would apply but that there was absolutley NO WAY that I would go there. I applied to Meredith online and started doing a little bit of research, I learned that Meredith was in division three athletics and that I could have the opportunity to compete in sports if I was a student there. I went to the athletics website and learned that they had a cross-country team. I filled out a perspective student athlete form just to see if I would get a call. Not even 3 hours later…I received a phone call from the infamous Coach K. He is the assistant cross-country coach at Meredith and let me tell you…he knows his stuff. When he called me it felt like I was talking to one of my high school coaches, he knew what high school I attended, who my coaches were, all of my previous track times, the last race I ran, what events I did, and on and on and on…I thought it was pretty cool that I could be an asset to a collegiate team. After talking with coach K, I decided that I would give Meredith a chance and go visit the campus.

I was originally supposed to visit Meredith as a cross-country recruit but my grandfather ended up getting sick so I had to reschedule and visited the campus as a regular perspective student. I remember the first time that we visited, we pulled up into the visitors parking lot and there was a sign right in the parking lot that said “RESERVED: FOR LAUREN MCDONALD AND FAMILY”, at that moment I knew something was different about Meredith then all of the other schools that I had visited, I wasn’t sure what kind of different Meredith was but I liked it. I felt important and that Meredith wanted me as a student. I had a really nice visit but was still unsure about the all-girls situation, I was very naive and thought that if I chose Meredith I wouldn’t have friends with the same interests, that I would be closed off from the outside world, never meet any boys, never go to any fraternity parties and never have any fun; as if NC State wasn’t almost directly across the street, and that downtown Raleigh wasn’t 1.5 miles away. With little time left before my high school graduation, I had to make a decision. I planned to give Meredith a shot and if I hated it, then I would transfer to NC State in a year with no problems.

My freshman year was a tough transition, but I think that it would have been tough regardless of where I choose to go to school.  I went from having everything done for me, (laundry, dinner, etc.) to having to do all of it on my own! But I stuck it out and “SUPRISINGLY”…. I made friends that liked to do the same things as me, I DID meet boys…LOTS of them, I attended many fraternity parties (and might I add, they’re not AT ALL what they’re cracked up to be), I DID go to NC State football games and I was definitely not closed off from the outside world! I am a fourth year Meredith cross-country runner and I can honestly say that sports is what initially made Meredith a possibility for me. Sports has been a part of my life for a long time and when I realized that I could continue to have that competitive outlet I knew that Meredith had something special to offer me that no other school could. I have enjoyed every moment that I have had as both an athlete and student at Meredith.

I am SO happy with the choice that I made because I feel that the education that I have received from Meredith is not only academic but also personal. I know that it sounds cliché but I have truly grown from a naive young lady into a confident, motivated and open-minded young woman. I never bought it prior to becoming an angel, but it is SO TRUE that the small class sizes, unavoidable sisterhood with your classmates, and the sincerity of the Meredith faculty is something that the majority of schools can’t and don’t offer. I have learned so many things at this place that I will soon call my alma mater, but for now I will leave you with one of the most important things that I have found to be true and that is…that you can’t judge a book by its cover!