Running swiftly with her teammates, senior midfielder and forward Alisa Velasquez dodged athletes from the opposite team and sent the black and white, grass-covered ball flying towards the other team’s goal.
Velasquez began playing soccer for TWU in 2013 and has loved her positions on the field ever since.
Velasquez said: “It’s a lot of sprinting and I do get tired a lot of the time, but I actually really enjoy it. Even though it’s really hard to score, or get past players and build up to get a goal, I wouldn’t want to play any other position — I like how hard I have to work for that.”
Velasquez attributes her motivation to do well on the field to support she receives from TWU community members and professors like Dr. Paul Ingram and her family’s faith in her: “Both of my parents have actually encouraged me, but my Dad — he’s always been there in the blistering cold or the heat of Texas.
He’s always been there for me and always been supportive, on and off the field. He’s always been my number one fan.”
Having played on TWU’s soccer team for three years now, Velasquez plans to continue playing if her health allows for it.
“I’ll play if I’m needed, but I’ve had seven concussions already. If I get one more, [my athletic trainer] already informed me and my coaches that I’ll be done for the rest of the year,” Velasquez expressed, “It’s kind of bittersweet having it come to an end, but I know I have to because of my head. But it’s all for the best because I need my brain for nursing school.”
A Nursing major, Velasquez will begin attending TWU’s College of Nursing in Dallas this spring.
Velasquez said: “I’m really excited. I heard a couple weeks ago and I just cried on the bus on the way to an away game. I had to check the email like 500 times to see if it really had my name. All my hard work paid off.”
She knew she wanted to pursue nursing as a future career after Velasquez began volunteering at Cook Children’s Hospital.
Velasquez said: “I’d like to be a pediatric nurse because I just really love kids and I always want to help them. I just have this strong will to help and I feel like, in the healthcare field, if there is a kid in pain, I’ll do anything and everything to help them.”