Four Nighthawks Attend NECC Student Program on Collegiate Careers

From Left to Right: Andrew Kalombo, Dylan Foran, Jaymesha Sanders, Tatianna Occena.
From Left to Right: Andrew Kalombo, Dylan Foran, Jaymesha Sanders, Tatianna Occena.

WORCESTER, Mass. - Nighthawks sophomores Andrew Kalombo and Dylan Foran and freshmen Jaymesha Sanders and Tatianna Occena were among a group of students invited to attend the New England Collegiate Conference program on Navigating and Empowering through Colligate Careers this past weekend, hosted by Becker College.

According to the NECC, the mission of the program is "to encourage and assist ethnic minority and female student-athletes to establish careers in college athletics," through the use of active learning sessions, roundtable discussions, and panel discussions.

The goal is for student-athletes to learn about their personal leadership abilities, professional development skills, and learn the basics of networking at events.

"It was amazing to meet and interact with other students from different schools," said Foran. "Because of this conference, I was able to learn, not only from the material but also by seeing the perspectives and ideas of people with goals similar to my own."

Over the two day program, student-athletes learned the history of the NCAA, ways to improve resumes and interview techniques, and the way to properly brand themselves on social media.

"I learned the necessary steps on how to began my career in the athletic world," said Sanders. "Learning that it is important to build your network because it will help you in the future when you are trying to find a job is also something I took away."

Student-athletes had the opportunity to hear from administration members, coaches, game officials, sports information directors, and athletic trainers in their time at the conference.

The panels included a number of familiar faces to the NECC, including Assistant AD of Dean College, Kevin Anderson, Head Women's Basketball Coach at Becker College, David Bostick, and NECC basketball official Renee Tourigny, who was an official in the Nighthawks women's basketball semifinal win over Elms.

"It was quite a great experience for me as a student-athlete," said Kalombo. "It's amazing that sports have given us the ability to be aware of (our future) and thus it is important for us to utilize this experience and knowledge toward our future careers."

"At the NECC meeting, I learned that it's about networking that the people you meet now can help you later in life," said Occena. "The more people you know, the more opportunities will come into your life."