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Life After Sports

Community. Family. Support. Love. Dedication.

Visiting TCU

“So why did you choose TCU?”… a question I receive quite often after telling someone that I was a student-athlete at TCU.

The answer is simple. When was 15, I went on my first unofficial visit… and it was to TCU.

When I stepped foot on campus, I felt welcomed. I felt like I belonged. I felt like I could be successful not only as an athlete, but as a student too. I felt the support that TCU receives from the entire city of Fort Worth. And I knew that I wanted to be a part of it all.

When we got in the car, I told my parents “I don’t want to visit anywhere else, I want to go to TCU.” They thought I was nuts and encouraged me to keep my options open, but deep down I knew I was going to be a Horned Frog.

Three months after my unofficial, I committed. I was so excited. I knew it was going to be a lot of work leading up to my time at TCU, and even more work once I got on campus in the summer of 2012, but I was determined to dedicate myself to the process.

College Years

I’m going to be honest with you. My freshman year was hard, especially that first semester. I was homesick, I had to learn a new position, new offensive and defensive systems, and I was being pushed harder than I had ever been pushed in my life. It was also TCU’s first year in the Big 12, which was eye opening.

My sophomore year was much smoother. I was setting, which was the position I got recruited to play. I got settled in with school and had adjusted to the grind of being a student-athlete.

My junior year was challenging. Our other setter got a concussion and was out for a while, so I had to step up and run a 5-1, something that I hadn’t done since club. After indoor season was over, the indoor team turned into the beach volleyball team for the inaugural TCU beach season. During beach season (a sport most of us had never played before), we were pushed to compete against the top teams in the nation. It was difficult both mentally and physically, but my partner (Sutton Mitchell) and I got the second win in program history. That win is one of my top 10 favorite wins of my life.

My senior year flew by. It was the most successful season that I had at TCU. We swept Texas at home (my favorite win of my life) and we made it to the NCAA tournament where we lost in the first round to Hawaii in five sets. After indoor season was over, I walked on to the TCU women’s golf team for my last semester. I enjoyed being able to bring a different kind of outlook to the team of underclassmen and it wasn’t so bad being able to play all of the top country clubs in Fort Worth every week.

While at TCU, I studied marketing in the Neeley School of Business. I loved the fact that my professors supported me as a student- athlete and I loved that the class sizes were small (smallest class I was ever in: 11 – upper division marketing | largest class: 100 – freshman bio). It was very normal to receive congratulatory emails from professors after a big win or to get recognized in class. Since volleyball traveled a lot in the fall, professors always went out of their way to make sure that I had everything I needed to be successful and students that I befriended in classes would also help me with class notes on the days that I had to miss. The faculty at TCU truly cares about their students and they want to see everyone succeed. A lot of my professors would even go out of their way to make specific office hours for me since I was usually practicing during their normal hours.

After College

After college, I decided to stay in Fort Worth (if you have been to Fort Worth, you know how great of a city it is) and I took a full-time job for the Ben Hogan Golf Equipment Company as their Marketing Coordinator. I was in charge of managing all social media channels, creating content for all of the channels along with a blog that was on the website. I was also in charge of setting up collaborations with other companies within the industry.

It was a fun job to have out of college, and with my golf background (I started playing competitive golf when I was six), I was able to hit the ground running from day one. However, nine months into my time at Ben Hogan, they filed for bankruptcy and all employees were laid off. You can imagine how great that phone call home was to inform my parents that I had just gotten laid off.

So there I was, 22 years old with no job. Life comes at ya fast. During this time in my life I was confused, scared, and unsure of many things. But it was my work ethic and the belief that I had in myself as a person, which I got from my many years as a student-athlete, that allowed me to fight back from this roadblock. To read more about this part in my life, check out this article that I wrote: Laid off at 22.

Teleos

I started to reach out to people that I knew in Fort Worth, one of them being Brandon Chase whom I had met after graduating from TCU. How I met the Chase family is a great story that I won’t go into detail about, but if you would like to learn more, you can read: How a 10 year old’s bravery changed her life, and mine.

Brandon introduced me to one of his friends and local Fort Worth entrepreneur via email. It was brought to my attention that his friend had always dreamed of started a marketing agency. We set up a meeting, and it was then that I learned more about the vision that they had for the agency and it all sounded really interesting to me. I was offered a job at a marketing agency that had yet to be created… and I took it.

I was the first person hired at Teleos Marketing. When I was brought onboard, we didn’t have a company name, logo, colors, or website. Nothing. But I believed in the vision that the co-founders had.

My first year at Teleos, I was a Production Manager/Social Media Specialist/Junior AE. It is extremely hard to get into the marketing agency world, so the first year or so I was a sponge. I pretty much did anything that was asked. I was trying to learn as much as possible as fast as possible. As a startup, you have to learn on the fly with the fail fast/fix fast mindset because the work does not stop.

A little over a year into my time at Teleos, I moved into the role of Account Executive and was given my own book of business which included a title company, a local artist, a dental practice and a flower shop. I was in charge of everything from marketing strategy, brand management, content creation, social strategy, placing traditional and digital media, website direction and messaging, and all marketing campaigns.

I have now been at Teleos for a little over two years. I have learned a ton about both business and myself. My book of business has slightly changed, but it is still a blast to work in this ever-changing industry. Every day is a new day filled with new ideas and challenges, which is fun to me.

Indebted to Volleyball

While my 9-5 job is at a marketing agency, I have a few other things that I do on the side that keep me connected to volleyball, the sport that I love and am forever indebted to.

In 2016, Coach Kramer gave me a call one day and asked if I would be interested in being the TV color commentator for the TCU volleyball games. Of course, I said “yes,” and have done it the last three seasons. Announcing has kept me close to the program, and I am so grateful for that.

I also work with a number of athletes on mindfulness and mental strength training. It is something that I have a true passion for, and I believe that they both play a huge role not only in sports, but life as well.

Getting Recruited

There is not a day that goes by that I don’t use something that I learned as a D1 student-athlete. It was at TCU where I learned the power of teamwork at a high level, I saw the power of trusting the process, I learned that being uncomfortable is okay, I learned what it felt like to push myself harder than I had ever done before, I felt the power of having a whole community behind me, I met my best friends, and I fell in love with the beautiful city of Fort Worth.

There is nothing better than being a student-athlete at the school that you Love. TCU was that school for me, and I am proud to be a part of the Horned Frog Family.

Volleyball

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