Being a varsity athlete and a full-time student can be a challenge.
But Volleyball Mountie Laurel Genge is adapting to athletics and academics at Mount Allison — and finding time to get involved in other ways.
"In first year you are adjusting to being in university. It can be a huge thing to move away from your family. But I've had a really good experience here because I met other people on my team who are doing the same things. I've definitely made some really good friendships," she says.
Genge, the recipient of a Bell Achievement Award, worth $9,000 per year for four years, is pursuing a Bachelor of Science degree with the long-term going of attending medical school.
She was the president of her high school's student council in Grade 12. She also taught Highland dancing and performed with a fiddle group called String Fever.
In addition to volleyball, Genge is involved in Because I am a Girl, Right to Play, and Mounties in Motion, a group of student-athletes that volunteer in local schools to help kids get active. She also works with her grandmother to sew pillowcases for Ryan's Case for Smiles, donating approximately 40 a month to Moncton area hospitals to brighten the rooms of children in the pediatric unit. Once the volleyball season ends, she plans to play the fiddle on weekends at the local nursing home.
"I really enjoy giving back. It makes me feel I am doing something for others in the world because I know that I am very fortunate to go to school," she says. "I'm very busy, but I love the atmosphere here. Everyone is so outgoing and I've met so many people from all around the world."
Genge also has a family connection to Mount Allison — an aunt and an uncle both attended.
"I'm from a small town and I've always grown up knowing my neighbours and being able to walk places," she says. "I heard good things about Mount A — the small class sizes, the community aspect of it, and I really liked the campus. I love the old buildings and I like how you can walk across campus in five to 10 minutes or get to the library without taking a bus."