The NESCAC is brimming with talented student-athletes and the "Friday Feature" is a way for fans to get to know them throughout the academic year. The conference introduces Middlebury's Sarah Staver, a volleyball student-athlete who hails from California and enjoys the changing seasons in Vermont.
Sarah Staver, Middlebury College
Manhattan Beach, Calif./Marymount
Minor: Sociology and Italian
Why did you choose to attend Middlebury?
I always knew I wanted to go to college outside of California. I was looking for a small, liberal arts school with a strong athletic program. Middlebury captured my interest because of its location and stellar language program.
Why did you choose to be a Division III student-athlete?
While volleyball is important to me, academics are just as, if not more important. I have always valued competing at a high-level on and off the court. Being a Division III student-athlete gives me the opportunity to both be a student and an athlete in an academically and athletically competitive league.
What is your dream job/career? Why?
I hope to one day be a pediatrician. I spent a lot of time at Boston Children's Hospital a few summers ago and was fortunate enough to meet a lot of brave patients. Seeing how medicine changed their lives inspired me to work towards becoming the person behind the scenes.
What extracurricular activities do you participate in?
I am on the committee for Middlebury College's Relay for Life team. This will be my fourth year working on the team and I have absolutely loved it. We work all year to organize the big Relay Day, and it is always amazing to see how many people come out and support Relay for Life's cause.
What has been the greatest part of your college experience so far?
I have really enjoyed living in such a unique place. In my opinion, Vermont is one of the most beautiful places in the United States. There is always something fun to do outside, whether it is visiting a waterfall, going apple picking, or hiking. It has been so special to be a member of such an active, "outdoorsy" community!
What are three top things on your bucket list?
1. Hike the Swiss Alps
2. Complete a cross country road trip
3. Travel to Australia
What has been your favorite class outside of your major? Why?
Italian is my favorite class outside of my major. Middlebury's Italian Department is so special. I feel like I have a second family in the faculty and in my classmates. I have learned so much about the language and culture and hope to one day experience life in Italy.
What is the greatest lesson you have learned from being a student-athlete?
Being a member of the volleyball team has taught me how to work with all types of people. As a teammate, you have to be willing to view any situation from your fellow teammates' perspective. In doing so, you are able to relate and understand where your teammate is coming from. Of course, this mindset is applicable outside of the gym to the "real world". Being on a team has taught me how to relate, understand, and work with all types of people.
How is your campus and surrounding area different from where you grew up?
I grew up in a small beach town where the sun shines almost every day of the year. Living in Middlebury has allowed me to experience the seasons. Fall is my absolute favorite time of the year. I remember I was in awe over the changing of the leaves my first year here at Middlebury; I had never seen leaves change color until that fall, and it is something I will never forget.
What is your favorite place on your campus and why?
My favorite place on campus is definitely the Organic Garden. I have so many memories of my teammates and I going there to watch the sunset after a long day of practice. The sun sets behind the mountains and leaves behind beautiful shades of pink and purple in the sky. It's truly amazing.