Before Temple’s 8-0 loss to Connecticut Friday afternoon, the Owls took the time to recognize their professors.
Players on the team acknowledged several professors, giving them badges that read “MVP: Most Valuable Professor.” Each professor stayed to watch the game, including David Smith, which was a new experience for the first-year teacher in the College of Education.
“This is my first athletics contest,” Smith said. “I love Temple. I think it is a great place to be. I’m really enjoying it.”
After attending Friday’s game, Debra Casey, a third-year professor in the Fox School of Business, will strive to attend more games.
“This is my first field hockey game but now that I have been to one, I’ll go to more,” Casey said. “Not just field hockey. I’m going to make a point to go to all of the sports, even if I don’t know about them. That’s what the internet is for.”
Casey understands some of the difficulties of being a student-athlete, which is part of why senior backer Kayla Laughman chose to recognize her.
“I chose my professor because she is a professor for my major and she is an avid supporter of Temple Athletics,” Laughman said. “It is a tough schedule when we’re travelling, especially when we get into conference play. If is miss a test I can make it up in office hours. Sometimes we put academics on the back burner, but she helps me balance it out and helps me be the best as a student and an athlete.”
Assistant Professor Richard Ridall, who teaches redshirt-sophomore forward Sarah Keer in the School of Tourism and Hospitality Management, said he attempts to support his student-athletes whenever possible.
“I try to as much as I can to get to games that fit in my schedule,” said Ridall, a Temple Criminal Justice and Sports Management graduate. “When I find out I have an athlete in my class I find out what sport it is and come support.”
Abbe Depretis, who is in her third year of instruction in the School of Media and Communication, teaches junior midfielder Michelle Walsh in her Rhetoric and Social Movements class every Monday, Wednesday and Friday.
“She does her work and makes time for her sport, which is impressive,” Depretis added. “She also comes to extra credit activities which is even more impressive.”
Associate professor in Human Resources Management Lynne Andersson knows personally the challenges being a collegiate student-athlete can present. Her daughter Brigit is a freshman on the women’s cross country team and is also enrolled in the Honors Program.
“I think it’s hard,”Andersson said. “It definitely gave me a new respect for student-athletes and how much training impacts life.”
Evan Easterling can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org