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Women's Basketball: Caira Wren: The Life of a Freshman Student-Athlete
The transition from high school to college can be both exhilarating and daunting.
Some students find the transition to be difficult with the heightened expectations of college professors, but others also may find it to be a breeze.
Nonetheless, freshman year is a challenge.
With the end goal of obtaining and undergraduate degree while trying to excel academically, many freshmen are faced with several obstacles and hurdles that they push themselves to overcome. However, there are things that make this transition a little bit easier, such as having the love and support of a team.
Caira Wren, who recently completed her first season as a member of the Louisiana Women's Basketball program, is a perfect example of this.
As a freshman student-athlete, the different rules and regulations differ from that of high school. Whether a student-athletes' expectations are to maintain playing time throughout the season or to push their team to winning a championship, the end goal is always to put their best foot forward and excel as a team.
"My expectations were to be a team player, go the furthest we could possibly go as a team and win a championship," Wren said. "Regardless of if I got playing time or not, I just wanted to see my team succeed and grow from the previous year. My expectations have not changed. I'm proud of us for how far we've come as a team."
Wren also expressed how working together with her teammates positively impacted her first year as a freshman.
"This season made me realize that I have a family within each of my teammates," Wren said. "It really humbled me because I was used to being the best, but coming in as a freshman on the team, I was not the best. It made me want to work harder and challenge myself in ways that I had never challenged myself before."
With one goal in mind, pushing her team to the championship, Wren actively worked on not only pushing herself outside of her comfort zone, but also appreciating and indulging in the little things that made the most impactful memories for her and her team.
"I loved traveling to North Carolina," Wren stated. "Winning against Appalachian was so much fun. I also loved getting to see snow. Because I'm from Baton Rouge, I had never seen snow like that. That trip also gave me and my team more bonding time."
While Wren was happy and celebratory about her teams win over Appalachian, she was also able to stay humble and keep a level head during their losses.
"Sometimes going out to get food together with my team and other times we celebrated as a team on the bus by cheering and singing," she added. "After losses, there was a lot of self-reflecting and having team conversations in the locker room. Music was also my go-to. I would put my headphones in and it would always help me feel better."
These are all memories, good and bad, that Wren plans to cherish forever as a humbling reflection of how far she has made it as a freshman.
The countless ups and downs, along with the unpredictable wins and losses, are all factors that have been major turning points for Wren as a freshman. For any freshman student, on or off the court, the lessons taught during freshman year will grow to mold them into the person they are on the road to success.
The preconceived daunting experience can have its fair share of doubts of overcoming the challenges, whether academically or athletically. But in the end, it is all about the positive attitude in which you maintain through it all.
Wren was humbled by both the wins and losses. She has taken some time to self-reflect and find harmony through the memories shared with her new family as a freshman.
As a rookie on the Women's Basketball team, Wren appreciates the memories shared with her teammates this past season and hopes that the next incoming freshman can look to her as an outstanding leader in the program.
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