This week’s athlete of the week is Alesha Lawson.
Lawson, a junior in chemistry and Spanish, is a member of the Women’s Rugby Club.
“I love the uniqueness of the sport,” Lawson said. “It’s nothing like I’ve ever played before. I enjoy the aggressiveness and high intensity of being on the pitch…”
Upon graduating college, Lawson plans to dedicate her life to ocean and environment conservation.
“I don’t know if I could choose a favorite memory,” Lawson said. “I have enjoyed every moment with them nearly equally. Being a part of the team has always been more than just playing Rugby. Our outside events spent together bring us closer as a team each time so I think those memories would be my favorite. There are many traditions in Rugby. Participating in them has been one of my favorite parts of being on the team.”
Like many other students and athletes, the pandemic has taken a toll on Lawson’s academic and athletic careers.
“During the pandemic we are currently experiencing, I have limited my social activity,” Lawson said. “For more than a year I have had significantly fewer interactions with new people and friends that aren’t in my immediate circle. I have been unable to participate in many of the things that bring joy to my life and had to find new hobbies. Balancing school amid such tense and serious moments of the world has had its effects rather directly or indirectly with nearly everyone on the planet. I can really only speak for myself but the past three semesters of college have been the most stressful years of education in my life. After the loss of my papa to COVID and the many other losses, Rugby became its own form of coping. I enjoy playing the sport and used it as a way to do something simply for myself. I didn’t join because I had to, but because I wanted to. Adapting to what proved to be less efficient ways of learning for myself was hard and continues to be. Striving to hold on to the life that I want to make for myself and the dreams I wish to accomplish has allowed me to persevere. Taking each week one step of a time has given me perspective and energy to work hard for what I want. For myself finding the things that I enjoy and taking time for them is most important for balancing school, work and life.”
This year, Lawson was voted Most Improved by the women’s rugby team, which she says has been her greatest accomplishment as a rugby player.
“…I have been recognized and proved successful in other sports but this I had earned for myself,” Lawson said.
While rugby is the only sport Lawson currently plays, it was not the first sport she participated in.
“I was heavily involved in multiple sports for nine years of my life until I transferred sophomore year of high school to a new school,” Lawson said. “When I transferred I poured myself into academics and found myself without time for sports. I wouldn’t change my decision to leave sports behind because I had no plans to pursue after high school. Playing rugby has made me reminiscent of my many years dedicated to being an athlete. I have rekindled my passion for sports through Rugby.”