Australian S12 swimmer Jeff Hardy swims freestyle at the 1996 Atlanta Paralympic GamesLuckily, I’ve always had people that have helped me along the way. For example when I was at Washington and Lee University, I was frustrated because I had a hard time coaching under the other coach. I was his assistant water polo and swimming coach, but he was a water polo coach by trade and only coached swimming because he had to. Whereas I was a swimming coach who was coaching water polo because I had to. Because of that, he was kind of threatened and it was a struggle. I wanted to get out and eventually a friend of mine who happened to be the associate athletics director at the University of Wyoming helped me out. He was the one who told me about an internship at Arizona State and encouraged me to apply. Although he didn’t know the guy who was hiring, he still gave him a call to tell him what he knew about me and I got a call back for an interview. Having friends like him have really helped me get to where I am now. These people helped me get the opportunities I needed to make a point for myself. Once I had the interview, it was up to me to secure the job. I was fortunate enough to get the job and then I’ve just been blessed along the way and have had many people there to help me by chance.

Similarly, I wasn’t looking for the job at Drake; I just had somebody that I had met along the way in my career who was the search consultant at the time. She called me one day and she’s like you would be a perfect fit for this job so she got me an interview but again, once I got the interview, I had to do it myself. I’ve been so lucky to have all these incredible people in my life and opportunities that I am so thankful for. It’s really crazy how unplanned my life has been actually. I’ve gone from place to place, job to job following the opportunities I am given and that is so important in life because opportunities are not endless.


Female on the Job