SAAC Spotlight: Simon Fraser's Sophie Klassen
Klassen is a Division 2 Athletics Directors Association (D2 ADA) Academic Achievement Award recipient and averaged 5.2 points per game in the 2021-22 season.
Klassen is a Division 2 Athletics Directors Association (D2 ADA) Academic Achievement Award recipient and averaged 5.2 points per game in the 2021-22 season.

Friday, September 23, 2022

Part of a regular series.

Throughout the year, uses this space to profile conference student-athletes who are members of their respective institutions’ Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC). In addition to providing feedback on the student-athlete experience, conference and institutional SAAC members also offer input on the rules, regulations, and policies that affect student-athletes’ lives on NCAA member institution campuses.

Name: Sophie Klassen
Sport: Women's Basketball
Institution: Simon Fraser
Year: Senior
Major: Kinesiology
Hometown: Chilliwack, British Columbia (Canada)

Why did you choose to attend SFU?: I couldn't pass up the opportunity to play for the highest-level sports program in all of Canada.

What is your favorite class you have taken in college and why?: My favorite class that I have taken would be biomechanics. It was really cool for me to see how a subject like physics, which felt so distant, could be applied to real human systems. Everything clicked for me when I took this class and it felt very easy, but also interesting.

Who is your favorite professor to date and why?: Dave Clarke. He helped me through things that were going on in my personal life by using the knowledge of the course material that we were covering. My sister was going through some sports-induced health concerns and the course I was taking with him at the time was Exercise Physiology. He helped to determine probable causes and referred her to a specialist. I am now going to be doing a directed study under him this year.

How many years were you involved in SAAC?: 4 years

What made you want to be involved in SAAC?: I wanted to get involved with more things on campus, meet new people and challenge myself in different ways outside of just school and basketball.

What is your most memorable SAAC activity to date?: We have had some really great themed pub nights in the past that have made it fun raising money, while also dancing and hanging out with other athletes.

What is the most important thing you've learned from balancing the demands of athletics and academics?: You have to be organized. This was a big adjustment from high school to university. In high school, I never wrote anything down, my schedule and due dates were all kept in my head, but this did not fly at the university level. Now, I keep a very detailed calendar that I continually update to make sure I'm not double booking myself and that I'm on top of everything.

What is the biggest obstacle you have overcome during your collegiate career?: I tore my ACL at the very beginning of the COVID  year. Not only was I isolated from people because of COVID, I now was isolated from my team and basketball, as I had to sit on the sidelines and watch my team practice all year. This year tested me and helped me grow in every possible way. I believe that I am much more of an empathetic and understanding person because of this experience.

Who are your current mentors?: The SFU women's basketball team does a mentorship program called "IMPACT" that includes many alumni of our program that are available to connect with. I have reached out and received advice from many different successful and prestigious alumni, like my coach's daughter, Dani Langford, who is now the physiotherapist for the Golden State Warriors.

What are your future goals after graduation?: I am still trying to figure out what I would like to do with my kinesiology degree, but I know I will be going back to school. This would likely be to pursue a career in medicine or physiotherapy.

What is the best advice you would give to an incoming freshman?: Your experience is not going to be perfect, but try to see it through. Through the good and the bad, everything is going to help you to grow, develop and mature as a person.

If you could spend the day with one person (past or present), who would it be and why?: Maybe Stephen Curry. He just seems down-to-earth and is one of my favorite players. I would love to chill with his family and maybe get a nice meal cooked by his wife, Ayesha Curry.

Favorite Sports Team: Golden State Warriors

Favorite Athlete: Stephen Curry

What is one thing that people don't know about you?: I'm terrified of eels.