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my pace

Paskowski

Career Preparation

Playing for the Win

Jessica Paskowski ’14
Nursing, BS
College of Health Professions
Westchester Campus

Jessica Paskowski '14 is the perfect example of a recent Pace University alumnus who isn't slowing down despite a tough economy. Paskowski has propelled from the soccer field into the real world after completing four years of a challenging curriculum combined with the everyday rigors of being a student-athlete.

"I chose Pace for its reputable nursing program and was able to have the chance to play Division II Soccer. Not many athletic programs allow student-athletes to pursue a career in nursing while being an athlete but I was lucky to find Pace and with the help of Mike Winn, I successfully completed my four years of college doing both."

Paskowski is currently tied for 5th in program history in varsity games played with 72. The former defender is regarded as one of the best players in recent program history and was a critical component in their success. In August of 2014, she accompanied the women's soccer team on a preseason exhibition tournament in Hawaii to assist the coaching staff to prepare for the upcoming season. "Playing soccer taught me that you're going to have bad days but what defines you is how you recover from those days. In order to be successful you have to work hard. Soccer taught me time management because it's so important to keep a schedule and make sure you're on top of things. I'd say soccer helped me become a mentally stronger person," said Paskowski.

Off the field, she just recently passed her boards and is currently searching for a position as a registered nurse. "I've just graduated so I'm starting my professional career but it seems that everyone has heard of or knows of Pace. The Pace nursing program really did prepare me for the field. The professors made sure we knew all the basics and then some. We were put into real life situations in a controlled environment, which gave us the opportunity to make mistakes where no one would get hurt and we were able learn from them. The school also has connections with great hospitals all over Westchester County and New York City which we are able to work at and get real hands-on experience." Since graduating, Paskowski has been working as a nursing assistant at Orange Regional Medical Center and in her spare time volunteers as an assistant varsity coach Roy C. Ketcham High School.

One staff member Paskowski recalls as making an impact on her life was Mike Winn, associate athletics director/operations at Pace and head soccer coach. "I think Mike Winn was one of the most influential people on campus that I knew. He was not only my coach but he really did care about my academic success. He helped me become 'mentally tough' on the field and off the field was always there to make a phone call or help with something if need be. I really believe he has all of his players' best interests at heart."

Paskowski also shared that studying at Pace transformed her into the individual she is today. "I was able to learn so much about myself and grow as a person. Pace brought many people into my life that are now some of my best friends and I'm thankful that the school, particularly soccer, brought us together. Going to Pace had its ups and downs but I always had a support group to help me get through it. I loved the sense of community I felt because I truly did feel at home when I was there."

So what would she tell today's student-athletes on transferring a successful collegiate experience into that of a successful career? "Work hard and take responsibility! Without hard work and preparation it will be hard to become the great athlete you want to be. Every time you step on the field make sure you leave everything there whether it's just a practice or a game. You never want to walk off the field thinking 'I wish I did this or that,' you need to put your best foot forward every time so you can be successful and your team can be successful. Athletes also need to work hard in the classroom. Make sure you're responsible enough to keep your grades up and make up any missed work from away games. And wear your team gear with pride. Be proud to be a student athlete and don't take it for granted because it really is an awesome experience!"

At the end of the day, this successful alumna has a very promising future as she continues doing what she loves: helping others. "I enjoy taking care of people. It excites me when I see people improving from whatever state they came to me in. I like being involved and hands-on work so nursing is perfect because a nurse is constantly on the move and always working with their hands. There is never a dull moment."

Alumni Profile

Jessica
Paskowski

"I chose Pace for its reputable nursing program and was able to have the chance to play Division II Soccer. Not many athletic programs allow student-athletes to pursue a career in nursing while being an athlete but I was lucky to find Pace."