Undergraduate Blog / Career Development

From Field to Office

I believe there is a direct correlation between participating in college athletics and the impact it can have on internships when coupled with learnings gained in the classroom. While it is undoubtedly true that I have begun to put my academic skills to great use as a Summer Valuation Analyst, it is the lessons, experiences, and takeaways from the sport of lacrosse that have allowed me to thrive in this role. For this week’s blog post I will discuss how my on-field experiences as a collegiate athlete have prepared me to operate under pressure, work in collaboration as a team unit, and lead by example; all soft skills that increase the value of what is gained in the classroom.

It is not the physical pressure of the opposing team, but the mental battles of winning, losing, and competing that have enabled me to effectively handle the demands of this job. Just as the clock on the scoreboard ticks away, so do the minutes leading to the time that I have to make my investment analysis pitch to my supervisor. While one bad turnover in a game could be costly, in the real world what could be costlier is if I over – or under – value a property by $50,000. The stakes are much higher in the office than on the field. However, I can credit my 15+ years of playing the game I love, for the reason I no longer associate pressure with burden; rather, I view pressure as opportunity to succeed.

In addition to learning how to handle pressure, lacrosse has instilled in me the value of teamwork and working as a group towards a common goal. At Stetson, every employee has a niche role that he or she must fulfill to their maximum potential, or the company will never profit. In order to enhance this team mentality, I am situated at an open desk with other finance-related specialists, so we can collaborate on ideas and assist each other in the valuation process. Lacrosse has made this transition extremely smooth due to the cohesiveness it creates between people who have different opinions, beliefs, and backgrounds.

Lastly, the cliché “actions speak louder than words” could not be more relevant to my early success as an intern. As I often show up to lacrosse practice early, and regularly stay late, to work on maximizing my potential, I often do the same at the office. Whether I am the first in or last out of the workplace, it is necessary to get the job done even when no one is watching.

A colleague of mine recently asked how I am able to handle the two hour twenty-minute round trip commutes, forty-hour work weeks, challenging tasks, and time-consuming excel spreadsheets. I responded with two simple words, “college athletics.”