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Follow the Leaders: Becca Yost, Frostburg State

By Becca Yost

Becca Yost is in her first year as a graduate assistant coach with the Frostburg State University men’s and women’s swimming teams in Maryland. A committee from the NCAA membership selected her to attend the 2016 Emerging Leaders Seminar, a gathering of more than 200 graduate assistants and interns at member schools and conference offices and postgraduate interns at the NCAA national office. Yost graduated from Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University in the spring with a bachelor’s degree in business management and entrepreneurship and was the operations intern at Virginia Amateur Sports.

Becca Yost, Frostburg State University

I do like leadership positions. I thought the Emerging Leaders Seminar would be a good opportunity to meet other people who are interested in the same things as me. My head coach forwarded me information about the program; he had attended a similar seminar a couple of years ago and remains close with his roommates from that seminar.

I learned a lot about myself from the behavioral assessments we took. When I read through the assessment, I thought, “This is me to a T.” I’m not somebody who likes to necessarily be in the limelight. I like to listen to other people’s ideas. I’d rather work in a group than be on my own. It helps with coaching because we do a lot of things together, instead of separately.

My favorite speaker at the seminar was Donald Remy, NCAA executive vice president and chief legal officer. He talked how everything is about the student-athlete first. He gave us advice on how to help the student-athletes focus on the student part instead of just the athlete part. He also put emphasis on mental health and the physical health of student-athletes. I got to sit and talk with Remy during the network lunch. We have swimmers at Frostburg who struggle with many things, and Remy gave me advice about how to work with my swimmers.

A lot of my swimmers come to me looking for advice. I want to be there for them all of the time and just let them know I’m always there, always listening, trying to give them as much advice as possible, and be someone they can rely on.

One key takeaway from the seminar was at the academics panel. The speakers talked about having our student-athletes focuses on the success they have, even for just one day a week. When I’m with my swimmers, I can say, “Hey, today, focus on what you have achieved this week.” Often they struggle with not getting where they want to be, but I think they need to look at the smaller picture and how that relates to the bigger picture.

Check It Out

Previous participants of the Emerging Leaders Seminar talk about how the program developed their careers in college sports.