UConn’s student-athletes are often lauded for their on-field achievements, but there’s an equally important – often unseen – dimension to the student-athlete. UConn Today is publishing a series of profiles to highlight the academic prowess of these student-athletes. Follow along as we profile two athletes each month, and provide an inside look at the academic pursuits of these high-achieving student-athletes.
Heidi Druehl ’19 (CAHNR)
Hometown and high school: Stamford, Connecticut; Westhill High School
Sport: Women’s Soccer, defense/midfield
Area of study: Nutritional sciences, with a minor in nutrition for exercise and sport
Anticipated graduation: May 2019
I hear you have older siblings who are UConn alums and were also involved in collegiate sports. What advice did they give you about how to succeed as a student-athlete?
The advice my siblings gave me was to make sure I get my priorities straight. You have very limited free time as a student-athlete because of all the workouts and practices you have. I was told that time management is key. Setting a plan to get work done is the best way to keep track of assignments and to make sure it all gets done in a timely fashion.
What has been your favorite class so far and why?
My first nutrition class at UConn has been my favorite class so far. It’s called Fundamentals of Nutrition. It was this class where I grew to enjoy learning about nutrition and realized I was actually good at it!
Are you involved with any clubs at UConn? What are some of your academic accomplishments here?
This semester I joined HuskyLEADS, an organization that helps student-athletes build leadership qualities. So far, we’ve attended several workshops that introduced us to what we think it means to be a leader. From this, I learned I’m the type of leader that takes initiative, works hard, and encourages others. We also attended a LinkedIn seminar to enhance our profile and networking opportunities. In terms of academics, every semester I’ve been here, I have earned above a 3.0 GPA.
Describe someone you’ve met on campus who has had a remarkable influence on you.
Catie Dann is the athletic trainer for our soccer team and she is like a second mom to me. She knows me better than myself. She pushes me to my full potential, even when I don’t think I can reach it. She is definitely a huge factor to my positive experience at UConn so far.
When you were in high school, you thought you might go into the field of sports medicine or athletic training, or even physical therapy. Has your career focus changed since you’ve been at UConn?
Yes, my career focus has changed since enrolling. I’ve decided to go into the nutritional sciences field. As I mentioned, the nutrition class I took freshman year opened my eyes to this field. I am now a nutritional sciences major, and minoring in nutrition for exercise and sport. With this, I hope to work with athletes and teams on their proper diets to reach peak performance.
In what ways do you think your time at UConn has helped shape who you are today?
UConn has helped shape my life by allowing me to find my real passion. Not only has UConn helped me figure out my career path, but I have found myself growing as a person. I’ve learned what it means to be a leader, a good listener, to be selfless, and to take on responsibilities.
Would you be willing to serve as a mentor to other students?
It would be a pleasure to help a fellow student out with academics or if they needed any advice about school. I would love to give back to the UConn community.
What does it mean to you to be a Husky?
To me, being a Husky is always striving for greatness. If you fail, don’t quit, and try again. Being a Husky means always working hard, and to push through even when times get tough.