For many student-athletes at Cal Poly, their sport is more than just a pastime. It’s a pursuit of excellence. Time and again, that pursuit of excellence also drives success in academics and a career. Read on about some remarkable accomplishments from just a few of the Orfalea College of Business current student-athletess and recent graduates.
Molly Haar Named a 2016-17 Big West Conference Scholar-Athlete of the Year
Molly Haar, a fourth year business major concentrating in financial management, was honored as one of the Mustangs’ 2016-17 Big West Conference Scholar-Athletes of the Year last month.
“Finding the words to express how proud I am to receive this award are hard to find. It means the world to me to be recognized for all the dedication I have put into my work both academically and athletically; but more than anything, however, it makes me feel incredibly grateful for the all the opportunities and people I have encountered while at Cal Poly that encourage me to grow as a more driven person.” said Haar.
For the last four years Haar has competed with Cal Poly’s cross country and track teams and has been honored for her academic achievements each year as well as her athletic contributions. She has also worked as a peer mentor for the Orfalea College of Business. After graduating in June, Haar plans to work in the field of real estate as well as receive her certification as a personal trainer.
Business Students and Cal Poly Football Players Honored for Academic Achievements
Seven members of the 2016 Cal Poly football team received Big Sky Conference all-academic honors. Five business administration majors made the list: finance senior and offensive lineman Billy Shipman, information systems/ accounting sophomore and offensive lineman Sam Ogee, accounting junior and offensive lineman Colin Goebel, business administration freshman and redshirt defensive back Carter Nichols, and entrepreneurship sophomore and defensive back Tully McCalister.
To be eligible for all-academic honors, students must have participated in at least half of the team’s competitions, achieved a 3.2 cumulative grade-point average at the end of the most recently completed term, and completed at least one academic term at their Big Sky school. Read the full story via the San Luis Obispo Tribune.
Cal Poly Pitcher Returns to Campus After Career-Ending Injury
Finance senior Matt Imhof is back on campus after a life-changing year. Imhof left school after his junior year as a second-round pick of the 2014 MLB draft. After losing an eye to a freak accident while training in June, he retired from pitching and made the move back to the Central Coast. Now Imhof coaches for Cal Poly’s baseball team while completing his degree. His decisions were chronicled in an essay he wrote for ESPN.
“After I got hurt I didn’t know how I was going to go forward,” said Imhof. “The professors and the advisors [at Cal Poly] have been more than willing to work with me and help me get to a point where I feel comfortable with the course load.”
Imhof says there is an emphasis on his education that was not there before his injury and return to Cal Poly, “When I was younger I tended to miss a lot of classes. I didn’t put the importance on education as I do now. Now I’m trying to make sure I learn everything I’m doing in my classes because I understand that my future job and my interviews depend on the knowledge I have.”
While Imhof is unsure of his plans for after graduation, he feels well prepared by Cal Poly for anything he will face, “I’m not sure if I want to go into coaching or if I want to go the business route. I’m kind of just looking at everything right now and trying to make the best decision for myself.”
Former Cal Poly Mustang Pitches for Team Israel in World Baseball Classic
Joey Wagman, an international business alumnus and right-handed pitcher, was part of Team Israel in the World Baseball Classic in March. He was the first former Mustang since 2013 to play in the World Baseball Classic since Jimmy Van Ostrand played for Team Canada in 2013.
Wagman was twice voted to the NCAA Big West Conference All-Conference Team, and was named a Louisville Slugger All-American. He established the school record for victories in a season with 13. He was drafted by the Chicago White Sox in the 17th round of the 2013 Major League Baseball draft. Pitching for the Rockford Aviators of the independent Frontier League in 2014, he led the league in strikeouts and was named to the Frontier League All-Star Team.
Soccer Standout and Marketing Student Recruited by LA Galaxy
In January, marketing student Justin Dhillon signed a contract with Major League Soccer’s LA Galaxy and was assigned to the club’s United Soccer League side Galaxy II. Dhillon, one of the top offensive players in Cal Poly men’s soccer history, finished his Mustang career in November ranked fourth in program history in assists (13), eighth in points (42) and appearances (73) and ninth in goals (15). Dhillon was also a two-time All-Big West Conference first team selection. As a senior in 2016, Dhillon was one of only two Mustangs to start all 17 games and finished third among Big West players with seven goals. He also led Cal Poly with 47 shot attempts.
In his first two seasons with Cal Poly, Dhillon was named to the Big West All-Freshmen Team and the All-Big West Second Team his sophomore year. Previously, Dhillon spent time with the U.S. U-18 Men’s National Team and featured for PSA Elite in the team’s 2015 U.S. Open Cup run.
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