The Knox Student: How, if at all, have academics and athletics overlapped and complimented each other here at Knox?
Jodi Marver: Playing basketball definitely helped me learn how to schedule my time better, figuring out when to do homework versus when practice is going to happen. I learned a lot about time management for sure, and staying on top of my stuff. That was the number one thing that really helped me with academics and basketball. In basketball you learn a lot, like teamwork, confidence in yourself, working hard. All that definitely ties into academics.
TKS: Are you involved in any programs or clubs on campus?
JM: I was in Alpha Phi Omega and Vice President of that, and I still volunteer at the school that I student taught at [Steele Elementary], so I go there three times a week and help out, and then I played basketball.
TKS: What are your plans post graduation?
JM: I’m planning on moving back to Northbrook and finding a teaching job around there. I’m still in the process of interviewing and applying places. I’m shooting to get an elementary job and also coach basketball. Some schools want me to coach high school while teaching elementary, some schools want me to do junior high while teaching elementary, some [coach] elementary and [teach] elementary, so it just depends.
TKS: Do you prefer coaching or do you prefer playing?
JM: Playing. I definitely love playing, but I feel like my time is kind of done with playing basketball. I just feel like I’ve kind of done everything I want to do and so I want to coach now. I thought about opportunities playing overseas, but just feel that it’s my time to coach now, and I’m excited for that new chapter.
TKS: What are some of your favorite memories from Knox, either from sports or in general?
JM: Well, from sports my favorite memory is definitely beating Monmouth this year. That was huge, and how far we’ve grown since I was a freshman with the program. My class definitely wanted to make a difference in the program and I think that we did. From when we came in to the program – to them not winning many games, to now, us almost in the Midwest conference tournament, which never happens – I feel like that group of girls really knew we made a difference. Going off of that, the friendships that I made through basketball and that I have kept here is definitely my favorite memory at Knox. The people who I’ve met here are going to be my life-long friends, and basketball helped me find them. I feel like Knox is really where I grew and found people who will be friends for the rest of my life.
TKS: How do you feel Knox has prepared you for the “real world” post graduation?
JM: I feel like Knox has prepared me because it taught me to really work hard at things, things don’t really come easy, and I had to overcome a lot of obstacles here at Knox from when I got here to when I leave. I think it was a good thing, because there’s going to be a lot of things that happen in life that I’m going to need to overcome. I feel like Knox gave me the ability to learn how to get over things, with support, but also on my own, and figuring out how to be independent.
TKS: Do you think you learned how to overcome obstacles through your experience on campus, through your major, or in basketball?
JM: I think all of it, to be honest. There were a lot of things I had to overcome, with basketball, academically, personally, and I don’t think I would have been able to overcome it anywhere else. There are a lot of hardships, but there are a lot of opportunities on how to get over it. With basketball, we had a lot of things not go our way, just with this year, and so I feel like our team really came together, and that showed in how successful we were, especially towards the end of the season.The way we all came together is something that is hard to find. It helps a team overcome things, often on the court. Academically, this school is pretty hard and so just support from professors was really helpful, especially with student teaching. Student teaching was really hard, especially to do on top of basketball. They recommend that you don’t do anything while you’re student teaching, but I did everything. So, it was really hard to do it all because I was busy every minute of the day, so my professors, my supervisor, my cooperating teacher all helped me through that.
TKS: What made you want to become a teacher? Did you know you wanted to teach coming into Knox?
JM: I did know, but definitely being here confirmed it. I really liked the idea that Knox has of accepting everyone. Hands-on learning is something that I learned here, and I really want to implement that as a teacher. A lot of the places I’m applying to at home are private schools, or charter schools that can have a more lenient way in which they teach and how they teach. That’s what I like about Knox: a lot of things are hands-on. I had a lot of opportunities to go abroad because of Knox, or to go off campus and learn things first hand.
TKS: Did you study abroad while you were at Knox?
JM: I didn’t study abroad, but I had opportunities to play basketball abroad and the school helped pay for it. I went to Italy after sophomore year and I was in Costa Rica this past summer. I played basketball both places.
TKS: For someone who doesn’t know how that works, what did you do?
JM: Basically, Coach Cline would get letters from these organizations saying “this player, we would like to invite them to go on this, it’s called a tour.” So it’s a two week tour, and it’s a lot of money to go on them, so I applied one year for a Richter grant and I got it. Last year I did a grant through Global Studies and I got that one too. Through those I was able to pay and go. These tours were two weeks long and you’d play like four to five games. I played against Italian club teams, I played against Costa Rica, I played against their national team when I was there, which is pretty cool. And then when you’re not playing you get to tour everywhere, so I got to see so many things. I wouldn’t have been able to do that if I hadn’t come here and if Knox hadn’t offered me any financial aid. I played a sport that covers almost the entire year. I never had time or the opportunity to study abroad, it wasn’t even an option.
TKS: What are you going to miss most about Knox?
Just going back to the people, it’s going to sting, because I’ve built these relationships with these people over the last four years. The people here are more open-minded and diverse, and I learned so much and got so much from people here, and to go back home and not have that is going to sting.