Junior volleyball player Kristina Stinson is the epitome of the label student-athlete. Stinson is a key rotational player on a Georgia State’s volleyball team and she is also one of the premier students on the team.
The combination of being a good athlete and a good student has given the Buford Georgia native the tools she needs to pursue the career she is passionate about even as a college junior.
Stinson, upon graduating from Georgia State University will pursue a career as an educator and a high school volleyball coach. Stinson is an education major and has made the Dean’s during the fall and spring semesters 2014 and making the President’s list in the spring of 2015.
She was also named to the 2013-2014 Sun Belt Academic Honor Roll. All this while playing in 55 of the 62 matches over the last two seasons for the Panthers.
Stinson feels that she has a responsibility to her future students and players to take her education as seriously as possible.
“I think thinking of my students when I’m doing my studying or doing my reading or anything like that, I always have them in mind. Even though I don’t know who they are yet or what age they are or anything like that, I’m still thinking about them, their futures and how my education is going to affect them and how that’s going to affect my teaching and helping them in learning,” Stinson said.
Spending four years on a college volleyball has given Stinson the knowledge of the sport she needs to follow the next part of her career path. It has also given her the ability to relate to young volleyball players as she has been there and done most of the things they have gone through as a young volleyball player.
“You have an understanding of what your player is going through. Even the middle school players I coach. I was a middle school player at one point too. So I know what they’re going through. Not just on the court but also in the classroom and all those physical changes their going through and social changes that also play a role in their development and that also plays a role in their development as players too,” Stinson said, “so, having that understanding of your players and really getting to know them, I think that’s really important.”
But Stinson has done even more outside of playing the sport she loves to prepare for her career. She has already spent years coaching young middle school players.
“I really like coaching. I’ve been coaching since my sophomore year of high school. And that honestly has kind of guided my path in my career,” Stinson said.
The coaching, educator path wasn’t the first path considered by Stinson. She can remember considering a career as a journalist. Her love for teaching children and gaining connections with them steered her in another direction.
“At first I thought I wanted to be a journalist, or a writer of some sort. But once I started working with kids I had an immediate connection with them and I fell in love with working with kids,” Stinson said.
Stinson will continue to mold herself into a future educator over her last two years at Georgia State and continue to make an impact for the Panthers on the court and in the classroom.