Accept and adapt: How sports prepared Alabama State's student president to lead in 2020

Olde Hornet

Well-Known Member

Before last year, 22-year-old Alabama State University senior David Hammond had never run for student government.

“That wasn’t my speed,” said Hammond. He was used to running plays.

As an offensive lineman at Central High School in Phenix City, Hammond’s focus didn’t stray too far from the football field. That changed after time spent at ASU.

In late April, students elected Hammond as their government association president after a successful term as the body's secretary. He credits much of what he’s learned about leadership from lessons on the sports field.

“Football taught me discipline. Football taught me I had to be accepting of everyone's emotions and feelings. It also taught me everything is not gonna go your way. Everything is not going to be how you planned. But when it doesn't go your way how are you going to adapt to it?” Hammond said.

This final point is one he’s sought to embrace this year, as COVID-19 has redefined the meaning of a typical “college experience.”