The road you set out on may not be the path you end up taking, and that’s OK. Just ask graduating senior Jordan Green.
“Growing up and in elementary school, I probably wasn’t the best kid,” Jordan explained. “Getting that label as a ‘troubled child’ really ended up motivating me to take more responsibility and take care of myself better.” Sports became Jordan’s way of getting himself on the right path. He excelled in baseball as an outfielder entering his senior year.
That would also be the year his mom was diagnosed with cancer. “That was a really difficult time” he said. “She was in and out of the hospital a lot and that was the crunch time for applying for schools.” Again, sports kept Jordan occupied and focused. In addition to baseball, he played football for the first time that year.
After excelling in both sports, it was football, the sport in which he had the least experience, that opened his world to recruitment at the next level. On the advice of a former coach, he looked at schools away from his family’s Tampa, Florida home. “He said a lot of people don’t live up to their full potential because they never branched out of their comfort zone and that really stuck with me,” Jordan said.
It was at a recruiting fair at Jefferson High School in Tampa that he met Head Football Coach Scott Donaldson for the first time. Jordan decided to introduce himself and the rest is history. “Coach Donaldson was so genuine. He really connected with me on a personal level and not just as an athlete.” Passing on other schools in Florida and the Midwest, Jordan decided he would pursue his undergraduate degree and play football at Heidelberg, 1,100 miles away from home.
After originally declaring as an education major, Jordan said he found himself “unmotivated” in classes. He credits Dr. Karen Jones, director of educational programming in Heidelberg’s Education Department, with helping him realize his ambition. “I knew I wanted to educate people but maybe it just wasn’t in the sense of a traditional teacher,” he said. “She helped me realize that.”
Jordan switched to business administration and plans to open his own life coaching business one day. “I want help people to realize the greatness they have inside of them.” He has seeing the big picture, so for now he’ll stick around the Berg after graduation to earn his MBA through the PlusOneAdvantage® Full-Tuition MBA Scholarship program -- just another step in his evolving journey.
While his athletic eligibility may have passed, Jordan hasn’t lost his appreciation for his teammates and coaches. Assistant Football Coach Ethan Nichols played a key role in pushing him both on and off the field. “I haven’t seen anything lower than a ‘B’ average since I met him,” Jordan laughed. “He knew what I was capable of on and off the field. He wouldn’t ever accept anything less than that.”
And now Jordan doesn’t expect anything less of himself, or others, either.