14 Jul Student of the Month: Joan Marie O’Connell
The goal of Seichou Karate® instructors is to prepare students mentally and physically so that they can achieve wholesome goals. That’s why we’re most proud of blue belt Joan Marie O’Connell, who is the first girl to play baseball in the Interstate Athletic Conference (“I.A.C.”)!
“I fell in love with baseball when I was five and started playing in Arlington Little League in fourth grade. Then, I decided to play for
my school team. So, my parents and I met with the athletic directors and they gave me permission to play.”
Her school administration and friends were supportive, but others were not. “On the first day of practice I was teased by teammates. Then, girls off the field spread rumors about me and others were even mean to my face.”
Those early days were tough for Joan but, one day at practice, a teammate asked what was wrong. “I told him about the hurtful rumors and he said that the boys didn’t believe those stories. Now my teammates and I are friends, and even the mean girls lightened up. It’s great having friends off, and on the field.”
Joan says that the experience has taught her important lessons about resilience, which is the word that chose last January for her New Year’s Resolution at the Kakizome Taikai at Seichou Karate®. “’Resilience’ is on my bedroom wall and I see it everyday. It has gotten me through everything from a test, to being the first girl in I.A.C. baseball.” Joan Marie’s resilience is exemplary to other Seichou Karate® students. For this reason, we’re naming her our Student of the Month. Congratulations, Joan Marie – OSU!