Senior Spotlight: Faith Platz

Faith Platz

When I walked onto Grand Valley’s campus in the fall of 2014, I had no idea what rowing was, or how it would change my life. In fact, I initially told myself that I was done with competitive sports. I was going to take it easy. Coming off a recent ACL tear, surgery, and long recovery, I put down my soccer cleats and basketball shoes and got ready to be a normal college kid. Man, was I in for a surprise. After a week or so of trying to adjust to college life, I started looking for organizations to join; free time has always been a foreign concept to me. That’s when I stumbled upon the Rowing Club. My freshman naiveté led me to the Novice Call-Out Meeting, which led me to check out the Boathouse, which led me to start attending practices. Fast forward four years, and I never stopped.

With the Laker Navy, I’ve competed in 11 different states, as well as Washington, D.C., and internationally in Canada and England. Needless to say, I’ve been on some crazy adventures with this team. Being a statistics major, I thought it would be interesting to figure out how much time I’ve spent riding to/from regattas in our beloved 15-passenger white vans over the years. I should probably thank Enterprise for accommodating more than 21 full days of my life. Either way, it’s been a wild ride.

I have experienced so much personal growth over the past four years. If you would have told anyone that the quiet, unassuming novice that I was would one day become the President of the entire organization, they wouldn’t believe it. Rowing has allowed me to form meaningful relationships with my teammates, work toward a common goal, and push myself more than I ever have before. It has been the most formative experience of my entire college experience, and if I could go back in time, I would do it all over again. I am proud to be one of the few to survive four full years of collegiate rowing, and I have many medals, miles traveled, and memories to show for it.

The Grand Valley State University Rowing Club challenges its student-athletes to reach the highest level to which they aspire both academically and athletically, while continuing to build and sustain a nationally competitive intercollegiate rowing program.

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