Passion for sport, business drives student athletes and future entrepreneurs | News Center

Utility infielder balances academic success, college athletics and increased mental health awareness while playing on the top-ranked Aztecs softball team

As a young man who grew up in Merced, California, perez jewelry he loved to play softball.

“I was physically the smallest kid on the team and I was never really good,” the San Diego State University youngster said. “But I kept playing because I was able to spend time with my childhood friends.”

As he grew older, Pérez and his parents became more aware of the advantages that sports offered to young athletes, so Pérez began seeking out and taking advantage of better training and playing opportunities.

Although many local softball fans were initially unconvinced that Pérez would find success in the sport, she set out to prove them wrong.

“My passion to continue playing softball was inspired by those who doubted my ability to play at a Division I level,” said Pérez, now a utility infielder for the Aztecs.

Pérez’s skills as a softball player grew to the point that she committed to playing at SDSU while still a 15-year-old high school sophomore. However, softball was not the only thing that brought her to college.

“Both the softball program and the business program are top-notch, so I wanted to spend four years where I knew I could develop my potential and leave me a better, more knowledgeable person,” said Perez, who is starting her junior year. as a manager. / majoring in entrepreneurship at Fowler College of Business this fall. “I chose a business major because my degree would give me the flexibility to do absolutely anything I wanted with my career plans. Also, the world needs more women with power and ideas.”

A standout student on a nationally ranked team has his challenges

A star both in the classroom and on the field, Perez started or played in 31 (of 56) of the nationally ranked Aztecs games this year and was named as one of 12 SDSU softball players in the academic team of all spring 2022 conferences. . SDSU softball had its second-best season in school history winning the 2022 Mountain West Conference champions and making a run at the NCAA championship before being eliminated by the top 10 Arizona State Sun Devils. in their regional finals.

As a student-athlete, Perez noted that the balancing act between maintaining academic success and success in college sports isn’t always easy.

“Outside, we all find ourselves fulfilled because of our dedication to both our sport and our studies, but the truth is that it is a struggle for many of us every day,” he said. “I want to talk about the importance of raising mental health awareness within college athletics everywhere. I have personally struggled trying to distinguish who I am outside of my sport. However, I know that I am passionate about my future here at SDSU for the next two years and beyond.”

Aztecs go pro

Perez Credits daniela kelly, who runs SDSU’s Aztecs Going Pro program, for taking some of the pressure off. Aztecs Going Pro is designed to help SDSU student-athletes transition to a career and life after college through various workshops, personalized coaching, and specially designed learning opportunities that address their specific needs.

“Danielle has truly inspired me to take advantage of every opportunity I have as an athlete to promote myself and create a bright future for my career,” said Perez.

Once she earns her bachelor’s degree and finishes her softball career at SDSU, Perez plans to follow her passion for business by earning her master’s degree or attending law school before setting up a real estate agency in San Diego. She is already in the process of laying the groundwork for building her own business, and with Kelly’s help, Perez has connected with several San Diego real estate professionals to help her along the way.

“I want to create a business in my own name and open opportunities for those who also want to work hard and maximize their potential,” he said.

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