Duke junior Ashley Camano will keep a weekly blog for the 2012 season, giving Duke fans an inside look at life on the Blue Devil field hockey team.
Look for Ashley's blog every week during the season on GoDuke.com
There's a time every half year that all students know is lurking beyond the first few weeks of every semester's honeymoon period-midterms. The return to academia after a summer where picking up a pen or opening a Microsoft Word document is a foreign feeling is always a difficult transition to make, regardless of your major or minor. Thankfully the semester seems to creep in slowly, tiptoeing through assignments and introductions and prefaces to what's really to come-all is well, until the real work arrives.
Thankfully as student-athletes at Duke, we're prepared for time management as effectively as we're prepared to run through drills every morning. Midterm week came and we remained on our mission-driven to separate school and field hockey when appropriate, we knew that at practice and in the classroom or the K Center, we have certain tasks we're meant to accomplish, and for once in our lives, multi-tasking isn't the right means of operation. That being said, we pushed through exams and scribed papers one after another, and before we knew it, it was time to head to Virginia for our weekend competition.
Even within the stressful fortnight of midterm assignments, my teammates and I made the time to put down the college books and instead pick up one for a slightly younger audience. Last week, we spent different times at the Duke Children's Center to assist in their goal to "Read for the Record"-a national program where preschools across the country tallied the number of readings of a book over the course of a day, looking to do so as many times as possible. As natural born competitors and furthermore, fellow Duke family members, the Duke Field Hockey team certainly wasn't going to turn down an opportunity to help break a record. We certainly want to extend our warmest gratitude to the Duke Children's Center for welcoming us-and don't worry, I won't give away how the story ends.
It was a fulfilling and rewarding experience not only for the children, but also for our team-it was impossible not to reminisce about our own favorite books as children, who read them to us and what we remember most vividly during that influential period of our lives. It made us realize that we have the power to make an impact in the community, and certainly the opportunity to act as role models for the young girls (and even boys!) who may one day be so inspired as to wear a Duke Field Hockey uniform of their own. Everyday, we are met with boundless opportunities to influence others in whatever way we so choose-and to be able to garner the job description as a Duke student-athlete certainly makes our power that much more potent. Our team is actively utilizing chances to make ourselves better-not just better hockey players, but better students, better role models, and better people.