Cougars Take On NCAA DIII Week

Cougars Take On NCAA DIII Week

Worcester, Mass.—Division III Week is a positive opportunity for all individuals associated within Division III to observe and celebrate the impact of athletics and of student-athletes on the campus and surrounding community. The event is part of Division III's Identity Initiative, which was introduced in 2010 to sharpen the division's identity and to enable schools and conferences to more effectively explain why they prefer to compete in Division III. The initiative has been guided by a strategic-positioning platform, describing Division III as a place where student-athletes can "follow [their] passions and develop [their] potential," within an approach that combines rigorous academics, competitive sports and an opportunity to pursue other interests.

To show appreciation for our own exceptional student-athletes we will be highlighting six individuals that encapsulate the Division III ideals on and off their respective fields. Here is a peak into their academic and professional achievements and involvement in the community.

Brandon King (Men's Lacrosse, Class or 2019): A junior majoring in Environmental Science and Policy spent last summer working as an Ambassador for National Grid on their Sustainability Hub on Main Street in Worcester. His duties involved some outreach to Worcester residents and other National Grid employees, educating them on Smart Energy Solutions Program. Reflecting on this experience, "it was an extremely beneficial way for me to get acquainted with real world policy issues and further my passion for helping to clean up the world around me." King is also a trained facilitator for the One Love Foundation shedding light on relationship violence. This summer, King will work under a professor at UMass Boston to conduct his own research program.

Kacey Legare (Volleyball/Women's Basketball, Class of 2019): A junior, majoring in psychology with a minor in education and a cluster in women's health is more than just a two sport athlete. She has conducted research on literacy development at Clark and will continue her research on language acquisition and processing at Mount Holyoke College this summer analyzing eye-movements and fixations while children and English-learning adults read to further understand phonics and reading comprehension. Legare is also the treasurer of Clark's chapter of NARAL Pro-Choice, a political advocacy group that supports reproductive rights for all.  To get a head start on her educational experience as a teacher, she volunteers at Columbus Park School in a 6th grade classroom as a teacher's aide and student helper.

Connor Maguire (Men's Soccer, Class of 2018): A senior majoring in biochemistry and molecular biology is currently involved in a research internship at UMass Medical School in the Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Pharmacology studying the misfolding on ALS linked proteins in hopes of finding a therapeutic use. He also volunteers in the Emergency Department at UMass Medical School Hospital.  Maguire supports his fellow athletes as a Sports Medicine Aide, gaining hands on experience in health and wellness for athletes.

Ana Mercado (Volleyball, Class of 2019): A junior majoring in biology emphasizes the time-management skills in balancing her life. She is currently on the SAAC E-board as a secretary and will take on the role of president next academic year and is part of the NEWMAC SAAC Programming Committee. She continued her involvement in Model UN from high school and recently attended a conference hosted by Mount Holyoke where she received an Honorable Mention award.  Mercado enjoys the opportunity to further develop qualities such as leadership, public speaking, critical thinking and working in a stressful environment. She is also a Sports Medicine Aide where she works closely with trainers and athletes to help them succeed in their own athletic pursuits.

Jack Stark (Men's Soccer, Class of 2019): A junior majoring in economics is currently studying abroad in London, England. He had this to say about his experience "You could live here your whole life and never run out of things to do.  On some week days I am in class and on others I intern in the data analytics department of a media company called Centaur Media.  On the weekends I completely immerse myself in the football (soccer) culture as I head to my favorite pub, "The Gunners Pub," to watch my favorite team Arsenal play.  I have also been to six professional football matches thus far and the atmosphere is electric. I have visited Amsterdam, Tenerife, Lisbon, Barcelona and Rome.  I am also going to be visiting Dublin and Paris while I am here.  Within England I have been to Stonehenge, Bath, and Manchester.  This truly is a life-changing experience".

Olivia Barksdale (Field Hockey, Class of 2019): A junior majoring in Environmental Science, Barksdale is currently studying abroad in Berlin, Germany. She is taking classes that are centered on sustainability, focusing on the UN's 17 Sustainable Development Goals. Barksdale is in the process of creating a website for public awareness and a sticker that can be posted at these establishments promoting their efforts for local sustainability and bee conservation/protection. On the weekends Barksdale is able to get some traveling in. She has been to Leipzig, Germany, Vienna, Austria, Zurich, Switzerland, Milan, Italy, Hamburg, Germany, Malmo, Sweden, Copenhagen, Denmark, and Postdam, Germany. She is also planning trips to Athens, Greece, Barcelona, Spain, Amsterdam, Netherlands, Freiburg/Black Forest, Germany, Helsinki, Finland, and Bremen, Germany.

Patrick Robinson (Baseball, Class of 2018): A senior Biology major, Robinson will be coming back to Clark after graduation in May to begin the Clark University Master of Business Adminstration program in the Fall of 2018. The baseball captain, right-handed pitcher is an active member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Comittee and an intern at UMass Medical School. He is part of the Emergency Medicine Research Assistant program (EMRAP) where he works every Monday. Last summer Robinson completed a LEAP project in which he produced and hosted his very own podcast. This summer Robinson will begin a position as a sales intren at Liberty Mutual Insurance as part of the MBA program.

Keep an eye out for the Instagram takeovers and follow us at @clarkathletics - Here is the line-up:

Monday, April 2: Brandon King

Tuesday, April 3: Ana Mercado

Wednesday, April 4: Connor Maguire

Thursday, April 5: Jack Stark

Friday, April 6: Kacey Legare

Saturday, April 7: Patrick Robinson

Sunday, April 8: Olivia Barksdale

Upcoming Events:

Saturday, April 14: Renny Classic/Alzheimer's Awareness: Men's Lacrosse vs. Wheaton at 8:00 p.m.