I am on the Women’s Swimming & Diving team here at Le Moyne College and quite honestly, it is the best decision I have ever made. There are many reasons for this, but most importantly, by swimming at Le Moyne I have made the best group of friends. Before I began classes at Le Moyne, my teammates supported me. Through college athletics at Le Moyne, I have formed bonds with people that I will have forever. I consider myself truly blessed to be a Dolphin.
Being a Dolphin has impacted my experience here at Le Moyne in more ways than one could imagine. By having the opportunity to be a part of a team, it has made me a better person and has also prepared me for my future. I feel that all student-athletes are encouraged to be leaders on his or her team. At Le Moyne, being a leader means having the best interest of the team in mind and making good decisions. It takes a lot for a person to act in ways to benefit the whole team. Doing things to benefit the greater good is at the forefront of Jesuit values. The athletic department is no exception to this.
The “Inside the L” initiative was started by the Le Moyne athletic department in 2011 and influences the lives of the athletes at Le Moyne on a regular basis. The initiative includes everyone in the athletic department; administrators, coaches and athletes. The goal is to give student-athletes the opportunity to become well rounded individuals in a distinctly Jesuit way. The athletic department offers a variety of programs to help student-athletes achieve this goal. Some of these programs include meetings, retreats, community service, social media accounts and leadership development programs that truly help student-athletes live out our Jesuit values.
There is a philosophy that comes out of the approach of “Inside the ‘L’.” This has been named “Inside the L Touchstone.” The philosophy helps to incorporate Jesuit values into student-athletes. This “touchstone” includes: magis (excellence with integrity); cura personalis (tough love and total care for each person in mind, body and spirit); men and women for others (leadership, service and love of neighbors); finding God in all things (spiritual beings who seek and embrace the sacred) and social justice (transformational love and a commitment to be the change). “Inside the L Touchstone” is a hard concept for some student-athletes to grasp because on the surface it seems like a lot of information. First year student-athletes can feel overwhelmed at the first “Inside the L” meeting at the beginning of the academic year. But soon they start to realize that the message of “Inside the L,” is quite simply to be a good person. You don’t have to be Catholic or know what magis means; you just try to live your life to make a difference. Inside the L initiative gives student-athletes a foundation to put all that the Jesuit tradition stands for into action.
The “Inside the L” philosophy eventually becomes second nature to student-athletes. The Swimming & Diving team does community service on a weekly basis. Bringing joy to others becomes the goal of all teams and brings teams closer together. Through the community service that all teams do, we are able to get to know the community members of Syracuse, and not just our tight-knit community on The Heights. Le Moyne athletes are distinctly different than at other schools because of our Jesuit values that are practiced because of the “Inside the L” initiative.
I am proud to say that I have started my adult life at Le Moyne College and it has a great deal to do with athletics. I truly feel that I have gotten a well rounded education and have become a more well rounded person through the teaching of “Inside the L.”
Written by: Kelly Klemmer, '17, Communications major
To learn more about athletics at Le Moyne, visit our Athletics page