By the students, for the students of Central Washington University

The Observer

By the students, for the students of Central Washington University

The Observer

By the students, for the students of Central Washington University

The Observer

Dedication, drive and time management: the lives of CWU student-athletes

Fourth year sprinter, Juliette Willams (Jacob Thompson)
Fifth year catcher, Austin Ohland (Jacob Thompson)
Third year wide receiver, Logan Brady (Jacob Thompson)

Juliette Williams


Meet Juliette Williams, a distinguished track & field sprinter majoring in Business Administration with a specialization in Marketing Management, along with a minor in Sports Business. She is poised to graduate in June 2024.

William’s seven-year journey in track & field began with four years at the varsity level in high school, followed by three years at the collegiate level. She stated that this passion for the sport was ignited by her innate speed and further fueled by the encouragement of her high school track coach, Mrs. Piccolo and teammates.

Balancing classwork

Maintaining a successful balance between academics and athletics can be a demanding task, but Williams has mastered it through careful time management.

“The best way I have found to manage my time effectively is a planner,” Williams said. “I keep a very detailed planner in my backpack that literally has my whole life written out for me.”

This level of planning reflects her dedication to excel not only in her coursework but also on the track. Her unique approach of mirroring her days throughout the week also ensures consistency in her schedule, allowing her to stay on top of her commitments.

“Monday and Wednesday follow roughly the same schedule and so do Tuesday and Thursday. As for Friday, Saturday and Sunday, I try to pick one thing that I know I need to do in the week and plan it for one of those days,” Williams explained.


An effective technique that Williams employs for staying engaged in her academics is: “Sitting in the first or second row in all my in-person classes,” Williams shared. “By doing this, I am less likely to check out when the professor is talking. It also keeps me from wanting to talk to whoever is sitting next to me.”

She said she values the importance of asking questions, recognizing that her inquiries often mirror those of her peers

“I have also learned that asking questions is completely okay,” Williams said. “Your classmates most likely appreciate you for asking that question because they were wondering the same thing.”

Williams explains that balancing a social life with the demands of academics and athletics is no small feat, but she manages this by consciously allocating time for meaningful interactions with friends and family.

“Honestly, it comes down to making time for what I want in my life,” Williams explains. “I try to go to one ‘fun’ thing with someone every week, whether it’s going to dinner, attending a game or simply engaging in a heartfelt conversation.”

Williams’ balance extends to self-care, recognizing that stress often arises from overstimulation. She engages in activities that recharge her, whether it’s, “reading a book, getting my nails done, watching the sunset or even napping,” Williams said.

Student-athlete resources

Williams’ commitment to academics is highlighted by the understanding that it ensures her scholarship eligibility, a priority that fuels her pursuit of excellence. Moreover, she has harnessed valuable resources available to student-athletes.

“As a student-athlete, I have access to many resources that have helped me succeed,” Williams said. “One resource I have found very helpful with my business classes is Peer-Assisted Learning (PALS) and studying in the reserve rooms in the library.”

Logan Brady


Meet Logan Brady, a crucial presence on CWU’s football team, who shared his journey of juggling athletics, academics and maintaining meaningful connections. Majoring in Environmental Science with a specialization in Geography, Brady is set to graduate in the spring of 2024.

Brady’s connection to football runs deep, dating back to his third-grade days. He explained that his entry into the sport was influenced by his father, a former college football player for the Navy. Although initially introduced to soccer, Brady quickly gravitated towards football, setting him on a path of passion and dedication.

Balancing classwork

Brady’s dedication is evident as he prioritizes school and football, reserving his limited free time for relaxation: “I go after school first typically, then football. If I have any time left I usually relax rather than keep up with friends outside of football.”

Balancing the rigorous demands of both academics and football often comes at the expense of a bustling social life, as Brady shared, “I sacrifice my social life for academics and football.”


Acknowledging his occasional struggles with time management, Brady has found effective ways to isolate himself and maintain focus on his academic commitments. The library serves as his sanctuary for uninterrupted study sessions, distancing himself from potential distractions posed by roommates.

“I’m pretty bad with time management, so I try to isolate myself with whatever I have to do until I feel good about it,” Brady said. “Other than that, I have a study playlist to help me focus.”

Finding a balance between his academic and athletic commitments can be challenging, but Brady remains open to connecting with friends and family whenever they need him. He acknowledged the difficulty of setting aside specific times and, instead, ensured that he’s available when his loved ones reach out.

“I am always open to them when they need something or just to talk,” Brady said. “I find it hard to set time aside to talk so I typically just push whatever I’m doing off whenever I’m needed.

Student-athlete resources

CWU offers robust support systems for student-athletes like Brady, with “Study table hours and [access to] tutors,” Brady shared. He has made use of these resources, seeking tutoring assistance during a challenging spring quarter for his chemistry class.

Austin Ohland


Meet Austin Ohland, a seasoned catcher on the baseball team, and a master of the delicate art of balancing academia and baseball. Ohland graduated last year with a degree in Business Administration, specializing in Leadership and Management. He returned for a fifth year of baseball and is currently pursuing a second degree in Managerial Economics, accompanied by a minor in Accounting.

Ohland’s journey in baseball began practically as soon as he could hold a bat. His passion for the sport ignited at a young age, and it never waned. He shared that baseball quickly became more than a game; it became a way of life.

Balancing classwork

Ohland attributes his ability to successfully manage both academics and baseball to his parents, who instilled in him invaluable time management skills. For him, separating academic and athletic commitments is paramount.

“Luckily for me, I had parents that instilled good time management skills to get my work done early and then not have to worry about it when it’s time for baseball,” Ohland said. “It’s extremely important for me to separate those times so that I can focus on one thing at once. When it’s time to get school work done, I can focus 100% on that, and then at the field, the outside world shuts down, and I can focus on the game.”

Ohland’s advice to his fellow student-athletes is straightforward but essential: “Do not procrastinate.” It’s a challenging task, but the discipline to complete work before leisure makes a significant difference, leading to stress-free time off.


Ohland prioritizes spending time with family and friends and does so by completing school work early in the week, often finishing as early as Wednesday, allowing for extended quality time with loved ones.

“Sometimes, I push this strategy a little hard and it can be stressful early in the week but having weekends free of school work really helps me recharge and be ready to attack the next week,” Ohland said. 

Ohland’s secret to academic success lies not solely in study habits, but also in dedicating focused time to the work. He has honed the skill of completing his coursework early, allowing him to dedicate the necessary time and attention to each task.

“For me, it’s not as much about the actual study habits as it is putting the time and focus into the work,” Ohland explains. “In college, I’ve been really good about getting my work done early in the day and early in the week so that I have the time to focus on the work and figure it out.”

Student-athlete resources

Ohland utilizes the dedicated library section available to athletes, granting them access to resources and academic assistance.

“The athletic department does a great job in providing resources to its athletes who are in need of them,” Ohland acknowledges. “We have a special section of the library that we can go to and get help with whatever we need.”

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