Putting in one’s best effort is all a person can do, but for one Forbush grad turned Lenoir-Rhyne student-athlete, she is always trying to push herself to make her best that much better.
2015 Forbush graduate Jessica Funk ground her way through school and in sports, and earned her spot on the volleyball roster at Lenoir-Rhyne. She’s been very appreciative of ways to create success that Forbush gave to her.
“With Jess, nothing’s ever come easy for her,” Jay Funk, Jessica’s dad, said. “Working’s not a problem. She digs in and gets it done.”
Funk’s dad said whenever he saw Jessica met a challenge she wasn’t good at, he’d catch her working on it on her own. It’s that type of commitment which has put her in the position where she is today.
“I’ve coached a lot of kids, and if the kid’s willing to work, the sky’s the limit,” Funk’s dad said.
The sky has been the limit for her. In her first season with the team, Lenoir-Rhyne won its first-ever conference tournament championship, and was also the first team in program history to make it past the first round of regionals.
Last year while looking at schools, she saw her mom’s name in the gymnasium as she played at Lenoir-Rhyne as well. Jessica saw that, along with other things, as the main reasons she chose to go to the school.
“I love the campus, I knew as soon as I went that I was going to go there,” Funk said. “It’s neat getting to play where my mom played.”
Along with volleyball, Funk was a successful keeper for soccer during her time at Forbush. Although she isn’t playing soccer in college, her favorite moment at Forbush was winning regionals at home to advance to the state championship game this past season. To make things that much sweeter, Funk’s saves throughout regulation and penalty kicks are the reason they got the privilege to play at NC State for a chance to win it all.
“That was a dream come true. My sophomore year I wanted us to get that far. Playing on that field and getting to play with the girls we did was amazing. I wish we would have won, but it’s OK. I was at the top of my career at the end,” Funk said.
As freshmen in high school or college would know, when they first go to school, they meet orientation leaders who essentially know the way around the entire campus, and ways to succeed. Funk was asked, “If you had the chance to be tell your freshman year self anything, what would it be?”
“I would tell her that not to take her time for granted at Forbush because it goes by so fast. Do your best and if your best didn’t put you into a college sport that’s okay.”