Former women’s tennis player Grace Lin, ‘19, starred on the women’s tennis team throughout her four years at Lehigh. Being on the team helped her develop teamwork skills and interpersonal dynamics that she uses in the workforce. (Courtesy of Lehigh Sports)

Q&A: Catching up with women’s tennis alumni

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The Brown and White spoke with three women’s tennis alumni  — Grace Lin,‘19, Kirstin Godau,‘18, and Jamie Campisi,‘17, — to reflect on their years at Lehigh and catch up on what they have achieved since graduation. 

Q: What are you currently doing, either professionally, or with tennis?

Grace Lin: I started working two weeks after I graduated, so quick turnaround. I do legal recruiting at a law firm in San Francisco. It has been a really great experience, so that has been nice. We have been remote since March, but luckily my firm was able to give us all the resources we need to be able to work from home effectively, and I am definitely grateful to have a job right now. As far as tennis goes, I actually have not really played since, I guess, my last match in April, just because I started working right away. Pre-COVID I was commuting so I just did not have as much time for that, but I have been trying to stay active by just doing other kinds of workouts like going on runs, yoga, and other things that are not necessarily tennis specific. That has been pretty nice because I feel like so much time was dedicated to just tennis, but I am looking forward to playing again and hopefully joining a league of some sort once everything has settled down.

Jamie Campisi: Tennis wise there has not been a lot. Right after I graduated Lehigh I started law school. I graduated Lehigh in May 2017, and I started law school in September 2017. I just graduated from law school in May, and I am clerking for a New Jersey Supreme Court justice.

Kirstin Godau: Tennis, I am just playing for fun, nothing professional or official like that. In terms of profession and work, I currently am an auditor at PWC, PricewaterhouseCoopers. I have been working there since I graduated from Lehigh in 2018.

Q: What are your favorite Lehigh tennis memories?

GL: I think I have had a lot of great memories with Lehigh tennis. Just meeting a lot of people, all my teammates, they are all lifelong friends. I think one of the most memorable moments for me was my sophomore year. We had the Patriot League Tournament at Lehigh, which was pretty special. My parents and my sister were able to come out and watch. Just having all my friends and peers literally drive over to Goodman and watch was really nice. I feel lucky for that because I know not every athlete will be able to have that tournament at home because they rotate.

JC: Just the camaraderie, practicing every day with your best friends, van rides, getting pre-match breakfast, or going out to eat after. As wonderful as competing was, and certainly that was such a huge highlight to be able to represent Lehigh in a conference like the Patriot League with so many great schools was a real honor and privilege. Certainly the time with my teammates, and then I had truly spectacular coaches who are still there. Really, the people definitely made it the truly wonderful experience it was. Also, the competitive gene definitely misses being able to put on a uniform and compete against other schools in an actual sport.”

KG: I would say probably the Patriot League Tournament my senior year, just because, in terms of our abilities as a tennis team, I think in my opinion, out of my four years that I was at Lehigh that was our strongest team in terms of talent as well as cohesiveness, working together and supporting each other. Although we did not win that was probably the day that we, as a team, played the best, supported each other, and cheered each other on. I would also say it was bittersweet because it was our last match on the team, but I would say that was probably my favorite and best memory.”

Q: Are there any lessons you learned from your time on the tennis team that still help you in life today? 

GL: Just in general, kind of touching back on the people that I have met through Lehigh tennis. They are lifelong friends, and I still keep in touch with all of them. I think that has been one of the most special parts of Lehigh tennis, just the people. The competitive tennis ends once you graduate, but it is the people that stay beyond that. I think a life lesson is, just in general, being a student-athlete in college teaches you a lot about time management, discipline and being able to adapt quickly. I think that has really helped me in post college and with my job. Just being able to interact with people, think quickly on my feet. I think that has helped me a lot, and just the teamwork dynamic. I work pretty well with my team, I really enjoy my department and I think we all work really well together. I think a lot of the teamwork from tennis has transferred to my professional life even though it has nothing to do with sports.”

KG: I would say just in general being on a team, a sports team and the college atmosphere has really helped with work. Even after you graduate college and you know everyone does group projects in class, being on a sports team you work with other people. That only continues once you start in the business world and whatever you do you are most likely not doing anything independent or without help from other people. Especially in my line of work, the way it is structured, you are on specific teams where you might be working on your own subset or section of the work, but together you are working towards a broader goal. At least for tennis that is kind of what it is because in doubles you have a partner that you are playing with, but when you are playing singles you are technically competing by yourself, but you are also competing for the broader group for the team.

Q: What have you been doing during the pandemic?

JC: My last semester of law school was remote, I did not get to have a graduation because of all of this. I am now clerking, like I said, for a New Jersey Supreme Court justice. Afterward I am going to be joining a major law firm and that could potentially be postponed, but definitely working remotely and working for a Supreme Court Justice who I have probably seen in person once max. Definitely a lot of video calls, a lot of emails, but definitely has not affected anything too much. You learn to adapt and adjust, and I think that is one thing athletics definitely does help with a lot. I can even say that was something that I learned from my time at Lehigh, as far as tennis and being able to adjust. You make the most of whatever the situation is before you. While I would certainly love to be in a normal environment and not in the middle of a global pandemic, I think it has turned out fine.

KG: In terms of work I have not been going into the office, I am still working remotely and probably will be for a while.Obviously for everyone it’s an adjustment, but I think my communication skills have definitely improved because it’s not as easy as when you’re in the office or wherever you are. You cannot walk up and ask someone a question, you have to be organized, schedule a time with people, and be concise and get to the point. I think it has helped in that aspect of improving communication and also just budgeting time, as well as challenging my abilities and mindset to separate work from my everyday life. You are not physically separating yourself from where you live and where you work. That has been an adjustment, but other than that, that is it from a COVID perspective.

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