Apr 29, 2023
7. Empowering ASU's Student-Athletes: A Deep Dive with Jean Boyd & Alonzo Jones
Student-Athlete Support System
In today's competitive world, student-athletes need a solid support system to help them manage the demands of both academics and sports. A successful support system should provide the necessary resources to help student-athletes succeed academically while also allowing them to excel in their sports. These may include academic tutors, mental health professionals, and physical trainers. Additionally, a support system should cater to the unique needs of each student-athlete, recognizing their personal strengths and weaknesses. Jean Boyd and Alonzo Jones discussed the importance of a holistic support system for student-athletes at Arizona State University. They shared how proactive measures, like providing tailored assistance in time management, study skills, and well-being, can help ensure a student-athlete's success. By focusing on individual student needs, they demonstrate their commitment to not only athletic but also academic success, leading to high retention and graduation rates for these students.
Balancing Multiple Roles and the Matrix of Decision Making
Managing multiple roles and identities, such as a student, athlete, and socialite, can be challenging for college students. Developing a sense of situational identity and understanding the different roles one has in different contexts can be a valuable tool for maintaining balance. The challenge lies in recognizing the legitimacy of each identity and making intentional and mindful decisions that align with one's values and goals while navigating various situations. Alonzo Jones introduces the concept of situational identity during the interview and emphasizes its importance for student-athletes. Both Boyd and Jones note that understanding and navigating these various roles can lead to success beyond sports and into leadership positions in any field. By replicating behaviors that contribute to their success, discarding habits that no longer serve them, and adopting new behaviors aligned with their goals, student-athletes can find balance in their lives.
Top Three Struggles for Student-Athletes
The top struggles student-athletes face are: (1) balancing the demands of athletics, academics, and personal relationships; (2) the incongruency of professional aspirations and academic demands; and (3) mental health concerns such as anxiety, depression, and suicidal thoughts. To help mitigate these challenges, it is crucial for universities to provide resources and support systems that empower student-athletes to thrive academically, athletically, and personally.
Timestamped Episode Summary:
00:00:05 - Introduction,
Dr. Shandra McDonald introduces the podcast and the guests, Deputy Athletic Director Jean Boyd and Associate Athletic Director Alonzo Jones from Arizona State University, who discuss student-athlete support systems.
00:00:12 - Student Athlete Dropout Rates,
Stats show that 40% of students drop out of college every year, with nearly 30% dropping out in the first year. The guests aim to improve these stats.
00:00:39 - Name, Image, and Likeness,
With the era of athletes earning millions, why is the school part even necessary? Jean Boyd discusses student-athlete name, image, and likeness (Episode Teaser).
00:01:45 - Student-Athlete Support Systems,
Arizona State University creates a holistic support system for student-athletes, evaluating each individual's background, strengths, and weaknesses. The university provides structured time for study, one-on-one support for study and time management skills, and continually monitors attendance.
00:12:05 - Accompanying Onboarding Process,
The guests discuss the accompanying onboarding process for student-athletes, taking into account the mental and emotional challenges faced by young people in the COVID-19 era. Arizona State University provides support for retention and graduation rates for student-athletes.
00:17:12 - Complex Dynamics of Identity Association,
Legislation allowing college athletes to profit from their name, image, and likeness is creating complex dynamics around identity association, particularly for young minority men who often see athletics as their primary path to success.
00:18:11 - Support Programs,
Student-Athlete Support program encourages student-athletes to balance multiple identities, including being a student, athlete, and employee. It is important to prepare for the future while still owning the moment, and the program aims to help young athletes navigate newfound freedoms.
00:23:07 - Matrix of Decision Making,
The Warrior Class matrix helps young athletes understand the different identities they hold and how they can balance them. By acknowledging the various identities and their legitimacy, student-athletes can make better decisions and lead with their student self in an intellectual environment.
00:27:27 - Situational Identity,
Understanding situational identity is key to making good decisions in different environments. Student-athletes must understand that their physical location and the identity that best serves that environment should guide their behavior. This framework can help them navigate different spaces throughout their lives.
00:29:02 - Balancing Multiple Roles,
The importance of balancing multiple roles extends beyond the college years. The situational identity framework can help individuals navigate different roles and spaces, whether as a daughter, employee, or caregiver. It is important to understand which identity best serves the situation to make informed decisions.
00:33:29 - Austin Case and Student-Athlete Incentives,
The Austin Case was a case where a student sued for not receiving academic awards like they did for athletic achievements. This has led to student athletes being incentivized to attend programs for a certain amount of money, which can be beneficial if done the right way, but can also be detrimental.
00:35:17 - Voluntary Student-Athlete Incentive Programs,
Student-athlete incentive programs are completely voluntary by the host institution and can be tied to high academic performance and co-curricular engagement. Not every institution is doing it, but a good percentage are.
00:36:53 - Top Three Struggles for Student-Athletes,
The top three struggles for student athletes are incongruency between professional and academic aspirations, mental health issues, and balancing all the things on their plate.
00:44:57 - Hope for the Future,
The human species is dynamic and ever-evolving. With unlimited resources at our disposal, we can create unprecedented perceived realities for ourselves as a society. With some instruction, guidance, and framing, we can continue to do great things together as a society in this country and in this world.
00:50:56 - Introduction and Appreciation,
The host and guests thank each other for having the courage and wherewithal to make the episode available.
00:51:12 - Conclusion,
The episode concludes with an invitation for listeners to share their stories of surviving freshman year in college and a promise to return next week with more tips for academic survival.
00:51:15 - Share Your Story,
Listeners are encouraged to reach out to the host at email@example.com to share their own experiences and stories of surviving their first year of college.
* Visit Arizona State University's Athletics website to learn more about their athletic programs and support services for student-athletes: https://thesundevils.com/
* Explore Scholar Baller, a nonprofit organization co-founded by Jean Boyd, which aims to bridge the gap between education and sport: https://scholarballer.org/
* Research and understand the NCAA's Name, Image, and Likeness (NIL) policy, which allows student-athletes to profit from their personal brand while in college: https://www.ncaa.org/sports/2021/2/8/about-taking-action.aspx
* Read the book Darwin's Athletes by John Hoberman to gain…