The equilibrium between studies, sports and Greek life: an athlete’s guide

First-year Holden Siena practicing at Lindberg Natatorium on Mar. 3, 2022.

Narita Lambert

First-year Holden Siena practicing at Lindberg Natatorium on Mar. 3, 2022.

Abhib Lal Amatya

Recently, schedules have become a bit hectic for student-athletes who have decided to join Greek life at Augustana since pledging has begun. Pledging normally lasts from 8 p.m. until 10:30 p.m. every night. There are also some students who have much more to care about than just balancing school around pledging hours and those are student-athletes. 

First-year swimmer Holden Siena believes that priorities play a huge role when it comes to balancing studies, sports and Greek life. 

“Well, it’s all about making sure you’re keeping your priorities straight. Knowing that for me, studies is obviously number one and athletics second because I am here to be a student and an athlete. So, I make sure that I put Greek life at third priority,” Siena said. 

First-year basketball player Mikey Hamilton devotes time management as the crucial factor in creating the perfect balance between all the activities. 

“I’d say the biggest part is the time management. It comes down to utilizing the time between classes, workouts and pledging at night,” Hamilton said. “The biggest part is staying off your phone and working on the computer instead because at the end of the day after pledging, you want to go to sleep so you can get up early next morning for 9 a.m. classes.”

Similarly, sophomore Austin Earley, a track and cross country athlete, also gives the vital role for time management to play. 

“I keep everything in a Google calendar to make sure everything is not clashing. Everyday I have to make sure that I am on top of my homework.” Earley said. “Not procrastinating is a really big way I have to continue to not fall behind.”

Joining Greek life could be a great way for student athletes to get away from the stress of college sports and make new friends. Greek life also introduces athletes to other students who aren’t involved in athletics at Augustana giving them new perspectives. 

“One of the benefits is having people to support you because in sports, it is very competitive and you can get mentally drained. Those brothers you make through fraternities will push you to be your best,” Hamilton said. 

Hamilton also said he thinks that Greek life will take care of your social life, life outside of the classroom and court. 

Earley and Siena also have similar thoughts towards the benefits of joining Greek life as an athlete.

“Just meeting new people. If you join Greek life, you will get to know so many people and make more connections. You are not only in one culture, you will be in multiple cultures,” Earley said. 

Joining Greek life as an athlete also comes with it’s own drawbacks. A completely new activity begins on top of already overwhelming studies and sports. Unfortunately, time comes out as the victim as a result. 

“We are already stacked with work and Greek life there makes even more stress. Luckily I have been in a group that is flexible and allows me to center around my athletics but time is still a huge factor,” Siena said.

Hamilton thinks that having to fix the schedule according to pledging hours rather than people he already knows could also be a drawback. 

Student-athletes also need to be physically as well as mentally fit to be on top of their game and studies. Greek life could potentially be an obstacle here that complicates the athletes schedules. 

Austin Earley has his own way to keep himself fit, even with the hectic schedule. 

“Physically, I just go to practice. Mentally, I just don’t take things seriously. I try not to get hung up on little things,” Earley said. 

Similarly, Siena believes that one cannot be physically fit if they are not mentally fit. 

“It’s about keeping ahead of your goal, knowing what is achievable and what you can reach for. You should always have another goal in sight so that once you achieve one, you instantly have another to work for and you always have something you are working towards,” Siena said.

“You cannot have a strong body without a strong mind,” Siena added.