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Cate Westenhover excels in academics and athletics

Track & Academic Stars

Baylor Journalism students Cate Westenhover & Diamond Richardson excel on the track & in the classroom

By Sarah Watson, Public Relations student

Cate Westenhover and Diamond Richardson have a lot of things in common. They're both journalism majors, they both have GPA's that are nearly perfect and they're both exceptional athletes on the track and field team. They have one other interesting thing in common: neither of them thought they would ever choose Baylor.

Cate, a native of Austin, thought she would run for the University of Texas.

"The first time I met Coach Harbor, I turned him down," said Westenhover. I didn't think I wanted to come to Baylor. He gave me another call and invited me on the visit and I started to change my mind."

Richardson has a similar story.

"I wasn't even thinking about Baylor. Being from Dallas, I thought it was too close to home. I agreed to come on a visit, but I didn't think I was going to like it. On my visit, I really liked the girls on the team, the coaches and the campus. By the end of my visit, I knew I wanted to come to Baylor."

During their time as Baylor Journalism majors, Westenhover and Richardson have excelled in the classroom as well as on the track. When asked how they managed their time, both said that maintaining a high GPA is simply part of the culture on the track team.

"I don't take more than 12 hours usually. That helps a lot," said Richardson. "For me, it's just about sticking to my schedule. I have school, practice and then I study. Keeping on top of that helps me not get overwhelmed at the last minute. I can't pull all-nighters, so when I have a test, I make sure I start studying three or four nights before. It's just about having a schedule and keeping it."

"Starting the routine is the hardest part," added Westenhover.

In addition to good study habits, both said that their professors have really helped them to do well in class.

"Having professors like Professor Parrish and Professor Darden who are so engaged in what they're teaching is really cool," said Richardson. "In other departments, the classes are bigger so the professors can't really get to know their students well. In the journalism department it has a more personal feel.

"Sometimes after I finish class, I'll just go chat with some of my professors. I have a lot of fun doing that," said Westenhover. We'll discuss my future plans or sometimes just hang out and talk. I really like my professors as people, not just teachers. I'm really thankful for them."

Both also stressed the benefits of living with other girls on the track team.

"My roommates, who were also on the team, really helped me develop good study habits during my freshman year," said Westenhover. "Hanging out with other girls on the team is nice because they understand."

"They understand your schedule. They understand that meals have to be planned out and that you have to get your sleep," said Richardson.

As far as having a social life, neither feels as though they miss out because of the friendships they've developed with other girls on the team.

"My social life is my team," said Westenhover. "Practice and going to the weight room is fun because you get to hang out with your friends."

After college, Westenhover will attend graduate school at Baylor to continue her education in journalism. After she finishes her graduate degree, she plans to join a post-collegiate running team for distance runners. She would like to work for some type of running company or team doing public relations or communication work.

Richardson plans to work in public relations as well, but isn't sure what type. She's had two internships in different types of public relations, and is considering doing PR for an entertainment company. As far as her future in running, Richardson says it depends on how the rest of they year goes. If it goes well, she will continue to train after graduation. No matter what, she says she'll always run because it's a part of her. "I love to run and I'll always love to run."