This week's "INTRODUCING ..." feature highlights York College of Pa. senior freestyler and backstroker Matt Jennings, who recently led off a 200-medley relay team that set YCP's pool record.
What is the background in the sport you play? I learned how to swim at my local summer pool Wakefield Chapel when I was four years old. I started to swim year around when I was ten. For high school I went to Robinson Secondary School where I won three Virginia State titles and All-American honors in my senior season.
What is your favorite spot on campus? My favorite spot on campus is the apartment I lived in for my sophomore and junior years here at school. I've had the same roommates for three years now and we had a lot of fun and made a lot of memories there. They are my best friends and I'm lucky to have made such loyal and lasting friendships.
Other than your team, what organization (s) do you participate in? I am a participant in Relay For Life, I currently have an internship at the local chapter of the Red Cross, and I will soon be inducted to the communications national honors fraternity Lambda Pi Eta.
What is the most important societal issue facing college students? I think the biggest issue with college students is the period of time right after graduation. With increasing tuition costs and the need for student loans many students graduate drowning in debt. In addition, with increasing unemployment, high interest rates, and rising inflation it is becoming increasingly difficult for new college graduates to find jobs and financially support themselves. Graduating with no job and thousands of dollars in debt is not an ideal transition into adulthood.
What is your major and what is the most important thing you learned in that discipline? My major is Mass Communications and I have minors in marketing and advertising. The most important thing I've learned is not everything can be learned from a textbook. Real-world experience and hands on learning in applying the skills you have acquired is ultimately is what is the most important.
Other than your family members, who was the most influential person in your life? I don't think one specific person had any more of an impact than anyone else. I think a combination of the friendships I've formed during my life so far have helped shape who I am.
If you could give one piece of advice to elementary school children, what would that advice be? Nothing in life is given to you. You need to work hard for what you want and you have to take it yourself.
What is your favorite form of entertainment? I love sports in general and if there is a game on I'm most likely watching.
Outside of the Capital Athletic Conference, who or what is your favorite sports person or team? I am a life long Washingtonian and very loyal to my local teams. I love the Redskins and Capitals. My favorite Redskin is Darrell Green, the Hall of Fame cornerback, because he was not only a great player and a lifelong Redskin, but he was and still is extremely active in serving the communities in the Washington D.C. area.
Name three (3) people, real or fictional, living or
dead, that you'd like to have dinner with?
George Carlin- He is without a doubt the best comedian of all time. I like him because he was fearless in pointing out the hypocrisy or ridiculousness of all aspects of life. He called it like he saw it and always said what most people thought, but for whatever reason were afraid to say themselves. His comedy always had social and cultural relevance and always seemed to strike a cord with the American people.
Herb Brooks- He was the coach of the 1980 U.S. Olympic hockey team. I don't know of any other coach motivating or leading their team in such a momentous achievement as he did. Brooks' leadership helped turn a ragtag team of college kids into champions. Beating the Soviets and later winning the gold medal was the greatest upset of all time in the history of sports. To talk to someone who was a part of something that special and extraordinary is an opportunity I would not pass up.
Keira Knightley- She's my celebrity crush.