Student Athlete Q&A with Shamar Martin
Current Senior, Football
What does it mean to be a student-athlete at Springfield College?
Being a student-athlete at Springfield College creates a great sense of pride and an even greater sense of responsibility. This isn’t just because we represent thousands of our student peers on campus, but also because we represent more than 129 years of tradition, integrity, and excellence demonstrated and exhibited by so many reputable student-athletes who have come before us.
What opportunities have been presented to you because you are a student-athlete that may not be afforded other students?
As a student-athlete at Springfield College I have been fortunate enough to build a network of former student-athletes and other inspiring professionals in their respective fields. During every preseason, Coach Cerasuolo would invite at least 10 different motivational speakers to share some words with us. As a student-athlete, it’s my responsibility to make sure I capitalize on every opportunity I am presented with. As an opportunist, I appreciate this extensive network that is committed and excited about the future success of Springfield College student-athletes.
How did your time in the NCAA Immersion Program at the NCAA Convention help you develop?
It was an eye-opening and extremely influential experience. Over the course of the convention, I had the opportunity to connect with more than 30 different Division III student-athletes of ethnic backgrounds who, in a lot of ways, were not so different than me. The bond that I developed with my cohort group was unbelievable. The convention truly reinforced the principle behind how being an athlete is more than just playing a sport. It truly showed me how sports can bring people from all different backgrounds together.
What is your most impactful experience as a student-athlete?
My most impactful experience as a student-athlete by far has to be the opportunity to change the life of Luke Bradley, the Springfield College Football team’s Team IMPACT player and honorary member. Luke was diagnosed with leukemia in 2011, and in the spring of 2013, he was drafted by the Springfield College Football Program under team IMPACT, a nonprofit organization based in Boston that has paired children dealing with life-threatening illnesses with college sports teams since 2011. In 2015, just a year before my first year, Luke relapsed and was hospitalized for 15 months. As I began my journey as a Springfield College student-athlete in August 2016, I remember watching the videos, hearing stories, and listening to speeches about Luke and about facing adversity. The first time I met Luke he was in a wheelchair and was on the sidelines at our first home game. Now as a senior on the team, Luke attends mostly all of the home games and is running around catching passes with us. Luke, who was told that he would never stand again, has pushed passed his limitations and overcome the highest degree of adversity. The amount of progress that I have experienced with Luke over my past four years has been tremendous, and it’s truly been an honor to have the opportunity to positively influence him. Being a Springfield College athlete has taught me that it’s so much more than football, and football is so much more than a game. I stand for those who can’t. I stand for Luke.
How have your internships within the sport management major help prepare you for your professional pursuits?
Throughout my time in the sport management program, I have had several volunteer experiences and completed two internships with the Boston Red Sox. I give credit to my entry into the Red Sox organization from a Springfield College Sport Management alumnus, Mike Commeta. My first supervisor, David Baggs, told me he flagged my resume because he saw I attended Springfield College and could tell that the College has a great reputation because of Mike’s work with the organization. Without Springfield College on my resume, I am not sure I would have gotten a shot at an interview.