At first, I believed my deepest passion was baseball, and that this, alone, was what drove me. But, in reflection, I have learned that it is about something different entirely: developing relationships with others. And, at the foundation of every interpersonal relationship is communication.
Despite being tasked with coaching athletes my own age (and sometimes older), I have managed to somehow make strong personal ties with these athletes. At first, I wasn’t entirely sure why; determining your truest strengths as a person and professional seem to come best in deep reflection on past experiences, certainly not in the moment. So, coming to understand what things have and have not worked for me has taken time. But, with deep introspection, I have humbly found that, for all of my many shortcomings (I assure you, I have many areas in which to improve), I have excelled in communicating with my athletes; whether it be communicating daily activities, the purpose and importance of various aspects of training, my own intentions as a coach, or in seemingly inconsequential conversation.
I certainly do not believe that this perceived strength has anything to do with skill or character traits that lend to success. Rather, I posit that I have stumbled upon success in communication with my athletes thanks in large part to a profound respect for language – an appreciation for both the spoken word and the written word.
Athletics have captivated the competitor in me, and taught lessons on work-ethic, discipline, and perseverance that have altered the course of my life. But, I now know that it is writing, reading, and speaking – language, that is – that have combined to be driving forces behind what I have managed to accomplish in this profession to this point.
Ultimately, it is my passion for communication, through both the written and spoken word, that has driven me to read, write, and pursue higher education in the art and craft of writing. I have written digitally and have been able to reach an audience of coaches. But, I want more; I humbly sought a program that could help me develop the skills to be more than just a coach, but also a writer in proper.
Of course, most people still give pause and question, “Why?” – why would I choose to write? My only answer is this: I write because I believe that I have something to say, that I have people I can help. I write because I have a story that I want to tell.
An adapted excerpt from my “Statement of Purpose” for application to JHU