The Mounties: Kelsey MacKinnon
1/9/2020 12:01:23 PMThird-year Badminton Mountie Kelsey MacKinnon, from Grand River, PEI, chose Mount Allison for its small, tight-knit community, its closeness to home, and the opportunity to continue playing two of her favourite sports — badminton and rugby.
“My sister Jenna (’16) also came to Mount Allison and loved it, so that was a huge selling point,” she says.
MacKinnon played club rugby in her first two years, but after suffering four concussions in two years and tearing a ligament in her arm, she chose to retire from the sport.
She began playing badminton in Grade 4, playing on a club team in Summerside, throughout junior high at Miscouche Consolidated, and at Three Oaks Senior High School. She also participated in a number of provincial and Atlantic tournaments on PEI. She played with the same partner in doubles from fourth grade until university, ultimately winning a provincial championship together. She also played soccer and basketball at the provincial level.
MacKinnon says what she loves most about badminton at Mount Allison is the team aspect.
“At the collegiate level, our points collectively add up to a team outcome,” she says. “ It makes everyone cheer for their teammates instead of competing against them, which makes the team a lot closer.”
She considers her greatest strengths in the game adaptability and leadership.
“It is a big part in a team game because we need leaders who can adapt to play at any of the events and switch around based on their skills.”
MacKinnon was recently chosen as Athlete of the Week for her 5-1 performance in the second ACAA home tournament of the year, hosted at Mount Allison.
“The award meant a lot to me because it was at a home tournament in front of friends and family,” she says.
MacKinnon was awarded female rookie of the year for badminton and rookie of the year for backs in rugby in her first year. She was also a league all-star in rugby.
A biology and commerce student, MacKinnon is involved with Mounties in Motion, volunteering at local schools; she volunteers at the hospital; and is on Mount Allison’s Relay for Life committee.
After graduation she is keeping her options open, considering occupational therapy, physiotherapy, and also writing the LSATs for law school.