Monday, February 24, 2014

Learning from Jason Collins

As many of us know, last year Jason Collins announced to the world that he is gay and yesterday he became the first openly gay athlete on a team in North America’s four major professional sports. I applaud Collins for all that he has done. In this post, I am not going to write about the politics of what happened or what this means for the LGBT community. However, I want to try to point out what I think we can all learn from Collins about pursuing our goals and dreams both professionally and personally.

The first thing we must understand is that Collins is the FIRST ever openly gay athlete in the NBA. No one has ever done what he had done before. But it didn’t just happen out of nowhere. Collins had a vision that if he could come out, others might be able to do the same. The important thing to realize is that even though it had never been done before, Collins could see it happening in his vision. That is the first step we all should realize. We must have a vision of where we want to go. Secondly, he believed in that vision. If you do not believe that you can do something that has never been done before, than you will never accomplish it.

No one had run the mile in under 4 minutes for many years. However, after the first person broke that record, others knew that it was possible, so more people started to run under 4 minutes. Now that Collins has made it possible to be an openly gay athlete in one of the major professional leagues, others will not be afraid to do the same. I think we can all learn from Jason Collins that if we want to accomplish our toughest dreams and goals, we must have a vision, even if it has never been done before, and we must have faith in our vision.


Michael Proska is a sophomore at Drexel University from Springfield, PA pursuing a Sport Management degree along with a minor in Statistics. Along with being a writer for the SMTSU blog, The Sports Complex, he has worked at Drexel Athletics and for the Philadelphia 76ers. Michael is also a member of the Army ROTC at Drexel University and the Secretary for the SMTSU.  Follow Michael on Twitter @mikeprosk.

 Connect with Michael Proska on LinkedIn. 

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