This week’s athlete of the week is dance team member and junior in nursing, Annie Vaters.
Vaters has been on the dance team at PSU for three years.
Vaters is also the president of Tri Sigma and the secretary of Be the Match. Additionally, she is part of a few other honor societies.
Like most children, Vaters began dancing as a young child, but her love for dance grew more and more as she got older.
“Well, I’ve been dancing since I was like three years old,” Vaters said. “So, basically my whole life.”
During her time in high school, Vaters competed in competitions and contests but now dances for fun on the Pitt State dance team.
“I’m just on the dance team at Pitt State,” Vaters said. “But in high school (and) growing up, I did like competitions.”
Vaters enjoys dancing and the way she is able to escape from reality at times.
“I think it’s a great way to express yourself and kind of get away from reality at times,” Vaters said. “It’s also just a fun thing for me to do and I like dancing in front of people and sharing what I love.”
Being involved in sports, clubs, organizations, and other activities, can be challenging while in college but Vaters says juggling all her activities has taught her useful skills.
“It definitely gets complicated at times,” Vaters said. “But it definitely helps keep me organized because I know when I have practices, when I have games, and stuff like that that definitely makes me prioritize my school work so that I can stay on top of things and make sure that I’m able to get it all done. School definitely comes first for me, no matter what. But I’ve been able to balance it, my whole life I’ve been doing it. I think it’s just made me good at time management and being able to prioritize things.”
For current students that are struggling to balance school and extracurriculars and future students who plan to be involved in activities on campus, Vaters says the best way to manage everything is to not get too overwhelmed.
“I would say that it’s okay to get stressed out,” Vaters said. “It’s normal and its gonna happen and to just kind of take a step back at times and take some time for yourself. So, that way you can try to stay calm and not get too stressed out. Because if you get too overwhelmed, you’re not going to be able to focus and get things done. So, just always remember to take time for yourself because that’s really important.”
According to Vaters, her biggest accomplishment in relation to dance has been how much the team has grown during the three years that she has been on the team.
“… For college… I would say the biggest accomplishment is how much our team has grown since I’ve been on it my freshman year,” Vaters said. “We’ve grown a lot and we have been able to start going to nationals now and we just placed ninth overall. So, I think that’s a really big accomplishment… (During my) freshman year when I was on the team, we weren’t even going to nationals yet. So, I think that was a big accomplishment for myself and the team as a whole.”