Cherish the Memories, Keep Following your Passion
By Ronan O Rourke on October 19, 2016

It is the time of year where campuses all over the country are hosting alumni weekends. There is no setting more ideal to invite former students to reunite with old friends, to see how the institution has developed, and of course watch some major sporting events!

The unparalleled joy of an overtime victory!

These weekends are usually joyous occasions in which we all reminisce over the great moments of our past glories. However, there is a bigger picture to consider as with any social gathering. For us sports fanatics, there is nothing better than recollecting some of the most memorable events we have experienced over the years. Of course I am no different, and cannot wait to discuss all the finer details of every big game we have ever played.

While the grandeur of accomplishments can sometimes become a little exaggerated over time, the point is that at the end of the day it doesn't matter how successful you were. Instead we should realize that these were some of life's most memorable events because we spent them with people that mean a lot to us. The company that surrounded us made the occasions even more special. That is what we really should be focusing on in these times of reflection. Memories come and go, but the people, no matter where they are, will be mutually connected for life.

Those who you surround yourself with will ultimately define you

I am positive that I am not alone in considering sporting memories as many of the highest points in my life. I used to sometimes think that this surely can't be a healthy approach to take but in time I came to the realization that my passion for sports should not be nurtured, in fact the complete opposite should take place, it must be encouraged.

Coaching staff following the ECAC Victory in 2015

If you asked me to name the most memorable moments in my life, I am not immediately thinking about completing my undergrad dissertation or receiving my Master's degree (though they obviously achievements I am very proud of!). Instead, I would be more likely to say celebrating Liverpool winning the 2005 Champions League or the Steven Gerrard inspired 2006 FA Cup victory, Ireland winning the 2009 Six Nations, or more recently Springfield College winning the 2011 NEWMAC tournament and, the 2013 and 2015 ECAC Championships.

The 2011 NEWMAC Championship Squad

These events will just stick with me forever. There is no easy reason to explain why but perhaps it is because at these moments you feel that you're a part of something which is greater than just you, and in most instances huge odds were defied to make these achievements possible. Lastly, and crucially I was able to share each and every one of these moments with the people in my life who are most important to me: friends that I will have for life.

We all desperately seek our calling in life. Too often we get caught following a path that has been imposed upon us rather than following our dreams. If we are the fortunate ones to discover there is something in life that you feel an extreme connection to, never let it go. Diversions will obviously occur as life is rarely straightforward, but absolutely never forget what truly drives you.

Therefore, whenever you meet up with old friends or teammates just remember that not only did you experience some unbelievable things in your past life but also that the future is bright and holds so many more opportunities to create potentially even better memories. The future is bright because of those unbelievable times you spent in your younger years. The foundation was well set. I know the main reason for a bright future is not however because of the moments of glory, but instead it is due to those I was surrounded with in the great times... That is what we should be thankful for.

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