SAAC Spotlight: Central Washington's Lily Newberry
Newberry played 18 games and 1004 minutes in the 2022 season.
Newberry played 18 games and 1004 minutes in the 2022 season.

Friday, December 30, 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: Lily Newberry
Sport: Women's Soccer
Institution: Central Washington University
Year: Junior
Major: Biomedical Sciences
Hometown: Centennial, Colorado

Why did you choose to attend CWU?: I chose to attend Central Washington University because as soon as I was on campus for my first visit, everyone within athletics and academics was excited to have me there and answered any questions I had. Every staff member supported my ambitions to play soccer, pursue a degree in biomedical sciences, and extend my education through the honors college. I also thought the campus was very pretty and somewhere I could see myself for four years.

What is your favorite class you have taken in college and why?: My favorite class I have taken in college so far is human physiology. I found it very interesting because we learned about all of the systems within the body and how they work together. As a biomedical student, this class was right up my alley and the professors for both the lecture and lab were great instructors.

Who is your favorite professor so far and why?: My favorite professor I have had is Ryan Galindo. He was my favorite professor because he cared about our learning and understanding. He was willing to answer questions beyond the scope of the class and stay after class to work with students and their struggles concerning the content in class.

How many years were you involved in SAAC?: Two years.

What made you want to be involved in SAAC?: I chose to get involved in SAAC because in high school I was a part of student government. I loved witnessing and being a part of the events that brought the student population so many smiles. In college, SAAC is an opportunity for me to replicate that same experience for the student-athletes and some of my closest friends.

What is your most memorable SAAC activity to date?: The most memorable SAAC activity to date for me is emceeing our lip sync battle that we host each year. This was memorable because it is a very funny event so being involved and interacting with each team after their performance was very entertaining.

How do you feel participating in SAAC will help you in life after you graduate?: SAAC will help me in life after graduating because it is a place that has allowed me to practice public speaking in a light-hearted manner. In doing so, I have gained more confidence as a public speaker and I don't have as many nerves. After graduation this will be useful because whether I am leading a meeting or an attendant at a meeting, I will not have the stress around speaking in those large groups.
What is the most important thing you've learned from balancing the demands of athletics and academics?: The most important thing I have learned from balancing the demands of athletics and academics is that my health and well-being should be top priority. When my mental, emotional or physical health drop, my ability to perform in the classroom and on the field is sacrificed. This is hard to recognize during the chaos of daily life but it is a key factor to success.
What is the biggest obstacle you have overcome during your collegiate career?: The biggest obstacle I have overcome during my collegiate career is a concussion I got in my freshman year. The concussion occurred a couple practices before the first games during the shortened pandemic season. The concussion lasted for six months and created a physical and social divide between myself and the team. I hated not playing, training and lifting but, additionally, I felt more disconnected from the team than ever as well.
What does it mean to you to be a Division II student-athlete?: To me being a Division II student-athlete means being your best self both in the class and out as well as your best self on and off the field. DII presents the unique opportunity to play at a high level and maintain a high involvement in academics as well.
What is the best advice you would give to an incoming freshman?: The best advice I would give to an incoming freshman is to not be afraid of the upperclassmen. Yes, they can be intimidating and it is prewired in human nature to be nervous around those that are older than us. But in college, age truly is just a number and some of your best friends can be found in those around you that are older. They often have the best advice and words of wisdom as well.
What is your favorite sports-related moment?: The most memorable sports-related moment for me was playing at University of Colorado-Colorado Springs. This was very memorable to me because it was one of our first games with our new head coach, Lindsey Lee. Coming into the game, we knew that UCCS was ranked in the top 25. We played hard and smart and finished the game with a 0-0 tie. Plus, it was the first time I could play with most of my family there to watch as well as some family friends so that added joy to the game as a whole as well.
Favorite Sports Team(s): My favorite sports team is any University of Arkansas athletics team. Having much of my family that attended this school, it is the school I grew up watching and cheered for. Whether it is a good day or bad day, I will cheer them on.
Favorite Athlete: My favorite athlete is Sophia Smith. She plays on the U.S. Women's National Soccer Team as well as the Portland Thorns. Her play style is very effective and consistent. She is also a very driven player who is always looking for ways to improve.
What is one thing that people don't know about you?: One thing that people don't know about me is that I wanted to be an architect for a long time when I was younger.