A powerhouse in the classroom and on the field, Maddie Hommey knows that meaningful connections drive both her education and her future career.
Transitioning from a Longwood undergraduate to a master’s student in the Health and Physical Education (HPE) program, Hommey has been able to customize her graduate experience so that she can continue serving in the campus and leadership roles that she loves. By taking advantage of a summer start date, fully online program and self-paced coursework, Hommey is on track to complete her master’s degree in one year.
“Overall, I have had a great balance between an in-person and fully online student experience with lots of flexibility to find my fit and be able to do the things I want to do,” she said. “I did not have to sacrifice vacations, work opportunities or other events, as I could work hard the week before or after to stay on pace for my courses.”
This flexibility in the program allowed Hommey to continue serving as captain of the women’s soccer team and the Big South Conference’s student representative on the National Student-Athlete Advisory Committee (SAAC), developing meaningful connections in the world of college athletics while ensuring that student-athletes at Longwood have the best experience possible.
The HPE program’s emphasis on leadership and coaching has complemented Hommey’s personal experience in sports. Her professors have taught her technical terms and strategies for effective leadership by offering a diversity of assignments — from written philosophies to video recordings and virtual books — as well as opportunities to be creative.
“The focus on content and pedagogical knowledge being intertwined and related to my experiences is without a doubt a highlight of this program as it provides me with the necessary preparation to be an effective teacher and coach,” Hommey said.
Over the past year, Hommey has held a number of additional roles on Longwood’s campus. As compliance assistant for the athletic department, she stepped into the professional world, learning about what happens behind the scenes to ensure NCAA eligibility. As marketing graduate assistant for the College of Graduate and Professional Studies, she delved into social media content creation, expanding her skill set by crafting inspirational and humorous videos for the graduate school’s TikTok, as well as spotlight posts and giveaways for their Instagram account.
“Planning, recording, and editing TikTok videos has been one of the most surprising elements to my job, which brings me lots of joy,” Hommey said. “I take pride in being able to create relatable videos that hopefully bring laughs to a few grad students who may be going through challenging times.”
Hommey’s postgraduate plans will keep her connected to Longwood’s graduate school, as she transitions from graduate assistant to a remote position with new responsibilities. Future doors stand wide open.
“I envision myself as a coach at some level in the future and know that the knowledge and skills I've learned in this program will help me best serve the players I coach,” Hommey shared. “The HPE program takes a holistic approach to provide me with specific education on the field of health and physical education while also educating students on concepts which translate to all fields.
“I feel prepared for success no matter where I end up.”