I’m a senior at California State University, Fullerton pursuing a Bachelor of Arts degree in Communication, with a concentration in Entertainment and Tourism. I consistently seek opportunities to strengthen my skills and enhance my knowledge to enter the entertainment industry prepared. I have many hobbies but the one I’m most passionate about is volleyball. I was introduced to the sport in elementary school and absolutely loved it. Ever since, I played every time I had the chance. As “cheesy” as it may be, I absolutely believe it played a huge role in forming me into the person I am today.
My parents worked a lot when I was a child which meant putting me either in day-care or recreational activities. They chose summer programs, camps, and sports teams for my hometown the city of Maywood, CA. I’m glad they chose recreational activities because it shaped me into the person I am today. I tried most of what the city offered including: volleyball, softball, basketball, soccer, drill team and ballet. That gave me first-hand knowledge to make the decision on what I wanted to continue pursuing instead of doing what my parents thought would be best for me. I struggled with choosing between ballet and volleyball. Being Hispanic, I constantly saw how important dancing is to my culture so I immediately became a part of that and took a love to any type of dancing. When it came to volleyball, it was easier to learn than the other sports I tried. Since I picked it up faster than the other girls, I was constantly being complimented on game days for standing out. I was in 5th grade about 10 years old. I wasn’t good, I just wasn’t as bad as everyone else. I started getting the hang of it and was excited to go back and play volleyball again next season until I found out I was moving to Montclair, CA. We did a lot of moving around from that point on and finally settled down in Fontana, CA when I’d start high school. Until then, I finally had my chance to play volleyball again.
“Success is not final, failure is not fatal; it is the courage to continue that counts.” -Winston Churchill
I was terrified to start high school in a completely brand new city knowing nobody but my brother. Hearing and seeing how freshmen always get picked on made me realize I needed to make friends fast. Immediately I thought joining volleyball would be a great opportunity to do that. The first day of school I asked a counselor how I could join and she told me try outs to join took place over the summer. I was distraught but knew I had to join something, so I asked what sports are still holding tryouts. I tried out and made the teams for cross-country and track.Even though I had fun running and made a lot of great friends, I missed playing volleyball. I tried out to join the volleyball team the following year and made varsity. I played sophomore through senior year and progressively got better. My main position was outside hitter but would stay in and be rotated to a passer. I was in great shape, had countless memories with my teammates, and kept my grades up to be eligible to play. I was not ready to let go of that when I graduated so a couple of my teammates and I went to the college we were planning on attending and spoke to the head volleyball coach about joining the team.
The head coach at Chaffey College suggested we sit in to watch a practice and observe how things are structured. After we observed the practice he allowed us to come back another day and join in as the tryout since they didn’t actually hold any. Two other teammates and I made the team and played for the two years allowed at a community college. My skills improved greatly, they had to. Being with the same team and competition for three years in high school limited my growth. College is a much more intense level and new teammates gave me the opportunity to learn from their past experiences and techniques. Continuing to play in college made the transition smoother and much more enjoyable. I was super involved with school, got an on campus job through the connections I had made, gained best friends I still have today and a great amount of memories I will always cherish. Aside from benefitting me as a person it also benefitted me as a student. Student athletes get priority when registering for classes and always have to be enrolled in at least 12 units keeping a 2.0 minimum GPA. This kept me on track and taught me to continue that standard for the rest of my undergrad career. As much as I wish I would’ve continued playing at CSUF I really wanted to focus on getting my BA and figuring out my career goals.