Recently, Harvard men's soccer player Sam Pratt attended "Hacking Harvard", a panel discussion put on by Crimson360 for first-year student athletes to address adjusting to life at Harvard and unique struggles that come with school and sports. Read his recap of the event below!
What was the event like?
The panelists introduced themselves and then the panel answered a few questions from the moderator. Towards the end the discussion was opened up to the audience in more of an open conversation.
Was it helpful? What kinds of things did they talk about that resonated with you? Was there anything they talked about that you hadn't even been thinking about but now are?
It was definitely helpful to hear them talk about what they are all doing outside of sports and the classroom. As a fall sport athlete I feel like I've been thrown into everything very quickly since arriving at Harvard, and I haven't been sure how to get involved with clubs or if that's even something I should be thinking about while I'm in season. Their advice was to explore things that you are interested in but that there is no pressure to overload your schedule as a first-year athlete.
Did you ask any questions? Did someone else ask a question you had also been thinking about?
Someone asked what resources we should be taking advantage of during our first year, which was a great question. I found out that there is a free peer-tutoring service for all Harvard students, which I didn't know about.
Did it seem like a lot of the first-year athletes had similar questions/concerns about adjusting to life at Harvard?
A lot of the first-years that were there seemed to be in a similar boat as me in terms of still figuring out how everything works here at Harvard. It's definitely a unique experience for Fall season athletes who are in season the day they show up to campus, so it was good to hear from the football and soccer player on the panel about how they adjusted their freshman fall.
What was one of the best pieces of advice they gave?
One of their best pieces of advice was to meet as many non-athletes as possible in the beginning, because your teammates will always be there for you but it is important to expand your social horizon beyond just sports.
Do you think it helped having six different sports represented?
It was great to hear from a diverse group of athletes because they all have had different experiences here depending on which sport they play and which year they are.