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Now is the time for excellence

Here’s what Maddie DeGroot knows about excellence: you can’t achieve it in a day. At Calvin, she’s been challenged on the softball field, in the classroom, and in her friendships.

Maddie DeGroot is a physical education teacher in Jenison Public Schools and a Calvin grad with a physical education degree. Here’s what she valued about her Calvin education.

Why did you choose Calvin?

When I stepped foot on Calvin’s campus, the sense of community was overwhelming. I felt like it was the perfect fit for me because I value belonging to a loving, Christian community.

I also chose Calvin because I knew I would be challenged academically but would also have the opportunity to stay involved in athletics. While athletic scholarships from other schools were tempting, I knew that the academic excellence found at Calvin was worth it.

What has your experience on the softball team taught you about excellence?

Being on the softball team has taught me that excellence is achieved in a lot of ways. It’s achieved through the 6 a.m. practices in the middle of winter. It’s achieved when you find it within yourself to get that extra rep in the weight room even when your arms are really tired. It’s achieved after hundreds of pushups, after thousands of ground balls. And excellence is achieved after discussions with teammates about leadership.

The culture of striving for excellence that defines our team has transferred into other aspects of my college life as well. In the classroom, I strive to find ways to make my understanding of concepts deeper and more applicable to my life. In my relationships, I strive for authenticity and intentional time with the people I love.

How has Calvin surprised you?

Because I have attended Christian schools my entire life, I thought I knew what to expect from Calvin classes. I thought I knew how faith is integrated into curricula. I was wrong.

Professors pose questions that make me think more deeply about my faith and help me apply what I am learning to help better my relationship with our Creator. I appreciate the challenge to think deeply, and it is something I have become accustomed to in every semester at Calvin.


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