Kayah ClarkeKayah Clarke, a rookie on the Lancer women’s basketball team, is balancing varsity athletics and academics.

Lancer rookie Kayah Clarke plays tough in sports and in life

With more than 24 hours of basketball practice each week and an academic load of four courses, Kayah Clarke has a busy schedule. A first-year human kinetics student and a rookie guard on the Lancer women’s team, Clarke admits that if it weren’t for her structured schedule, she would be a procrastinator.

“It’s tough, but the coach does take academics very seriously so there’s no slacking,” says Clarke, adding that head coach Chantal Vallée monitors the team’s academic progress closely.

Clarke has to write down her grades and assignment deadlines in a book, so Vallée has an idea of what the week looks like. Clarke also is supervised through six hours of study each week — a requirement for first-year students.

“That time blocked off in my days helps me study,” Clarke says. “I can’t say ‘I’ll do it later’.”

That supportive environment extends to her professors, who are understanding of scheduling conflicts, and accommodate them by allowing her to write exams on a different dates.

Clarke chose Windsor because of its human kinetics program and its basketball team.

“The human kinetics program is as great as the basketball team, so it’s perfect fit for what I wanted to do in both aspects of my life,” says Clarke. She says the program prepares its students for medical school. “Other schools didn’t have what Windsor has to offer.”

Once she graduates, Clarke wants to play basketball professionally for a couple years, and then to become a sports therapist: “It’s definitely been tough but it’s possible to be successful in academics and sports.”

—article and photo by Loren Mastracci

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