Developing Student-Athletes in a Christian Environment

Developing Student-Athletes in a Christian Environment

I transferred to SNU in the fall of 2018, so I am fairly new to campus, but what I have experienced is just how much everyone’s faith is involved in what they do on campus. As a member of the cross country and track teams, a lot of what we do is Christ-oriented. We begin each practice by getting in a circle, interlocking arms and we give praises or prayer requests before we have a member of the team give a prayer to close out the meeting. Just like on the main campus of SNU, our faith is a big part of what we do during practice.

This is something that I find very calming and inviting. I have been a part of multiple teams in high school and college, and at most, we would give a small prayer before we were about to compete against other teams, but never before practice or to the extent we do here at SNU.

An interesting thing that Coach Billy Miller does is that he meets with every runner individually before the season begins so that he can help them set academic and spiritual goals for their season. Speaking with Coach Miller, it is very important to him to “not only help the student develop athletically and academically but also spiritually.”

Speaking with fellow transfer and cross country and track teammate Nancy Jurado she stated that “the culture that has been created by Coach Miller makes everyone including transfers welcomed.”

Running is something that takes a lot of patience, and the only way to improve is to do it consistently. There is always a gap between the great runners who are fully committed and the average runners who are not, just like there’s a gap between the great students and the average ones. When everything you do is Christ-centered, there are not many things in which you cannot succeed.

It takes an effort to be the best you can be in the classroom, on the playing field and within yourself. It is great to get an education and participate in a sport that helps you pay for that education, but when you lack spiritually, there is always a feeling like nothing you do is enough.

There are many different types of religions all around the world, but here at SNU, Christianity goes hand-in-hand with everything a student-athlete should aspire to be or do. This is why the development of student-athletes in a Christian environment is so important.

(Photo by Steven Lelham on Unsplash)