MSOE BB player learns valuable lessons at an Olympic internship

When I worked for former, now retired state Senator Mary Lazich (R-New Berlin) she’d often send me to fill in for her to speak at an Eagle Scout ceremony and present a plaque when she had a scheduling conflict. Eagle Scout is the highest advancement rank in Scouting. 

My presentation usually included some standard remarks. For example, I’d ask the audience to participate, asking them if they saw any local TV news cameras in attendance. Radio, newspaper reporters?

Of course the answers were no. Too busy, I noted, following stories about gang bangers and young thugs. And that’s sad, I continued, because 95% of today’s youth should be the subject of attention since they’re good, decent, commendable, hard-working individuals. And if (insert name of Eagle Scout recipient) is any indication of our future, I’m confident our country is in very, very good hands.

That comment never failed to get applause.

Since the early 1990’s I’ve had the privilege of being the public address announced at the fabulous MSOE Kern Center for both the Milwaukee School of Engineering men’s and women’s basketball programs. I’d also say I’m blessed because I’ve encountered dozens and dozens of high quality young student athletes.

One of them this season playing for the women is Raekyiah Williams, a 5’9” sophomore guard from Fountain, Colorado, majoring in biomedical engineering.

Women's Basketball Wins Third Straight

Between her freshman and sophomore years at MSOE she took part in an internship at the United States Olympic and Paralympic Museum in Colorado Springs, Colorado. The experience taught her valuable lessons about the importance of being an intern and about her future endeavor.

When I initially applied for the job, I didn’t really know what it entailed, I just thought it sounded cool. I’ve never really watched the Olympics or Paralympics, so I didn’t know much about them.’

“It’s especially good as a freshman going into sophomore year to just look for something more fun or not exactly what you want because there isn’t the pressure of actually getting a job with your degree. You can essentially do whatever you want. I used to want to work in a hospital and after working at the museum I am now open to working in athletics and medical devices. This just goes to show you can learn things about yourself and your future in any workplace.”

Unfortunately you didn’t see Williams’ story on Channels 4, 6, 10, 12, or 58. And you didn’t read about it in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel.

Williams was, however, the subject of a feature article in the MSOE Dimensions Magazine.

Like all MSOE basketball players Williams won’t play professional ball. But reading about her reminded me of my early days of doing the PA at MSOE. The Journal Sentinel did come to MSOE to do a story on the men’s team. The lone player in the gym just shooting around was Zach Nemitz, a very un-basketball-like 5’7”.

The newspaper quoted Nemitz, a senior at the time, saying upon his upcoming graduation he had already secured a job with a salary of $175,000. That was 2003 by the way.

Williams plays in her final home game of the season tonight. In two years her basketball career will likely be over. But something tells me she’ll be okay.

One thought on “MSOE BB player learns valuable lessons at an Olympic internship

  1. Pingback: My Most Popular Blogs (02/14/22) | This Just In… From Franklin, WI

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