Mel commitments to UMass Boston!
Date Posted: 9/1/2015
Q: “Congratulations on your decision to play at UMass! Can you tell us about your recruiting process to provide some insight for our younger players?”
A: "Thanks so much! I started reaching out to coaches before nationals of my 16's year. I initially emailed close to 35 schools to keep my options open. During fall of my junior year I did more research and started narrowing down the schools I was interested in and started sending out videos to the coaches. All throughout club season I emailed coaches before every tournament to let them know my team's schedule and where we would be playing. I also kept them updated with new video footage and results on how the team was doing. The hardest part though was probably picking up the phone to actually call the coaches, but it is an essential part of the process! It gave me a chance to ask a lot of questions and get to know the coach I was talking to. It wasn't until about May of my junior year that I started reaching out to UMASS-Boston. I had signed up for a summer camp at another college and the assistant coach from UMASS was going to be there helping run the camp. They were able to see me at nationals, as well as the camp and expressed interest in me. After the camp while I was in town, I set up a visit to meet the coaches and some of the players, and tour the campus. A current Senior and player on the team gave my family and I a personal tour around the campus. She was able to give me the perspective of what it would be like to attend the school as a student-athlete. I think that was essential for me. I would suggest if at all possible, to set-up a tour of a prospective college with a current athlete. Once I got on campus for the visit, I knew it was the school for me! The coaching staff was great and I felt right at home."
Q: "How has Wildcat Jrs. prepared or helped you through the college recruiting process?”
A: "Wildcats has played such a key role for me in the recruiting process. Not only did the club make me a stronger, better player, but the coaches really helped guide me through the process. It was really great knowing that the coaches had been in the same position I was and understood what my goals were and how to get there. Every coach was willing to help in any way possible, whether it was to answer a question I had or to reach out to a coach for me. Practices really pushed me to work my hardest and allowed me to grow as an individual player as well as a team player. Because of the competitiveness of Wildcats, I got a lot of great exposure at some of the best tournaments in the country."
Q: "Is there is any advice you would give our younger Wildcat Jrs. players that want to pursue playing volleyball in college?”
A: "I would say that it is essential to start early. Volleyball recruiting is such an accelerated process and staying on top of it will make it much more manageable. Also, don't be discouraged if what you were hoping for doesn't work out! Even if one door shuts there is always another one that will open. When you are looking at schools it is really important to be sure that you like all aspects of the school and not just the volleyball. If you can't picture yourself there, without playing volleyball, then it probably isn't the school for you. Keep an open mind, work hard and don't be afraid to reach out!"