It's perfect timing for this week's INTRODUCING ... featured athlete, St. Mary's junior men's tennis standout Kenny Nugent, who is also this week's CAC Men's Tennis Player of the Week. Nugent was twice named to the CAC Academic Honor Roll and has been named the team's Most Improved Player in each of the past two seasons.
What is your background in the sport you play? I first started playing tennis when I was around 7 years old. Everyone I knew played soccer, and I wanted to try something new. I played off and on until high school, when I really got into the sport, and haven't stopped since then. I love the feeling of stepping on to the court, where nothing but tennis matters. It has always calmed me down, regardless of anything going on away from the court.
What is your favorite spot on campus? I love being able to go running and relax down by the waterfront. Nothing beats the fresh smell of the bay, especially after being stuck in a classroom all day.
Other than your team, what organization (s) do you participate in (on campus or off campus)? It is definitely important for college students to be involved around campus to get the full effect of college. One of the organizations I am involved in is the Biological Honor Society. In this group, we try to provide activities to convince students that biology isn't really as bad as most people think. I also serve on the school Judicial Board. Students tend to respond much better when talking to their peers, so I believe it is very important that the school Judicial Board is composed of students to be fair to the student body as a whole.
What is the most important societal issue facing college students? I think one of the most important issues facing college students is global warming and climate change. Not enough people realize the severity of this issue, and how important it is to stop global warming now. As the world is handed over to our generation, college students need to be willing to take action to repair the damages done to the environment
What is your major in college, and what is the most important thing you learned in that discipline? My major in college is Biology, but the most important thing this major has taught me is take classes in as many disciplines as possible. So many fields in education depend and build on each other, so I have learned how important a liberal arts education can be.
Other than your family members, who was the most influential person in your life? There have been so many people that have influenced me; I don't think I could pick out anyone specifically that has been the most influential. One person that does, however, stand out in my mind was my high school tennis coach, Mr. Springle. Mr. Springle was the one that convinced me to play tennis again when I got to high school. Regardless of the outcome of any match, Mr. Springle just wanted to make sure that you enjoyed yourself during the match and that you did the best you possibly could. He was also able to always sneak in life lessons that he somehow could relate to tennis, so that you didn't realize what he was doing until thinking about it later.
If you could give one piece of advice to elementary school children, what would that advice be? Listen to your teachers, they're pretty smart. I hate to say it, but that grammar stuff never goes away (it usually just gets tougher). I wish I could go back and thank each one of my teachers for all the hard work they put into my education. Teachers never get the credit they really deserve, and I think everyone should make sure they let their teachers know just how much of an impact they have had on the student's life.
What is your favorite form of entertainment? I'd say my favorite form of entertainment is just sitting around and talking to my friends. I love being able to relax and enjoy the good company.
Outside of the Capital Athletic Conference, who or what is your favorite sports person or team? Being from New York, the Yankees are an easy answer for me. A lot of people might not like this answer, but the Yankees are by far the best team ever. I love the atmosphere at baseball games, especially because the start of the baseball season means that summer and nice weather is right around the corner.
Name three (3) people, real or fictional, living or dead, that you'd like to have dinner with. Three people I'd like to have dinner with would be my two grandfathers and my friend Steven. I never got the chance to get to know one of my grandfathers, and I never even met the other one. They both sound like extremely interesting people, and I'd love to have the chance to ask them about all the stories I've heard about them. My friend Steven passed away in high school, and it would be great to be able to go back and laugh with him about all the crazy stuff we did together.