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Student Spotlight: Jordyn Gary

For the first time in history, the university's dance team has a male dancer. Meet Jordyn Gary -- sophomore nursing student and Carolina Dance Team member.

How do you balance the demands of being a student-athlete with the rigorous requirements of nursing classes?

Balancing dance and nursing surely isn’t an easy task, it requires a lot of dedication to schoolwork as well as the dances. Some weeks are a little easier than others but ultimately starting early, making sure study time is effective, and using resources like drop-in hours, are how I manage to stay afloat with all the demands from both sides. Sometimes the workload does get overwhelming as a student-athlete, so taking time for self-care is also so important to me.

What brought you to the university to pursue a nursing education?

I originally didn’t know what I wanted to do senior year of high school, but I knew that helping others and caring for others was a top priority for me. I thought that nursing would be a perfect field to go into knowing that USC’s nursing values aligned with my core values. I also wanted to be the representation of what you normally don’t see in the health care field. Ultimately, I knew it was a great choice because of the program's high success rate and the amount of knowledge the program gives you compared to others.

How has being a student-athlete influenced your perspective on health and wellness, and how do you plan to integrate that perspective into your future nursing career?

Being a student-athlete directly influences my perspective on health and wellness because it is such a big part of what we do. After rigorous training daily, I have become aware of the importance of maintaining physical and mental well-being. The significance of proper nutrition and healthy habits as an athlete. In my future nursing career, I plan to integrate healthy habits and educate my patients on the importance of wellness and preventative care for certain illnesses/injuries. My experiences have equipped me with valuable lessons that will help me contribute to the well-being of those under my care!

Nursing classes can be intense. How do you handle stress and maintain focus, especially with the additional responsibilities of being an athlete?

Dealing with the workload and the responsibility of being on the dance team is tough especially when there are so many events and exams in the same week. It’s easy to get caught up in the craziness of it all, but having a blocked-out schedule with times attached has helped me significantly. Planning is such a big part of handling the workload and making sure I'm not missing anything between nursing and dance team. Also finding the balance between studying, sleeping, and self-care is just as important as knowing the material. 

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