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Student Profile: Jordan Simmons, '20, Biology

Morristown, NJ (October 27, 2016) – Jordan Simmons, '20, biology, was recruited to play basketball on the first men's basketball team at CSE.

"I am looking forward to making my mark on the first men's team at CSE," says Jordan. "I like that I will be part of making history!"

Jordan played point guard for Andrew Jackson High School in Jacksonville, Fla., on a team that went 23-4 in their last season. He was recruited by Tom Wagenblast, the CSE men's basketball coach, in the middle of his senior year. A trip to the campus in February, 2016, left no assumptions about New Jersey weather, but Jordan loved the atmosphere of the close knit community. He is very excited about the potential of this new Division III team, which is starting its season in November, and is enjoying the camaraderie of his new teammates.

Academics figured into his choice of CSE as well. He earned some college-level credits from Florida State College at Jacksonville during his senior year. He is studying biology at CSE and is seriously considering becoming a pharmacist.

"Biology is the most flexible of the sciences for the medical field, which is why I am focusing on it," he explains.

His proclivity for the medical field seems to stem from his mother, Kim, who is a nurse. While his family supported his decision to attend CSE, it is his late grandfather, Robert Lawhorn, who had a great influence on him.

"He always saw the positive, even when I was complaining about a bad game," says Jordan. "He pushed me to rise above disappointments and get back on the court."

Another strong influence in his life is his best friend, Derek Harris, who is still in high school in Florida.

"Derek challenged me on the court and in life," Jordan explains. "He is like my brother and is always there for me."

Jordan wants Jason Saldiveri to know how much he has valued his support and companionship. Now he is finding this support and encouragement from his fellow students, teammates, and professors at CSE.

"I like the fact that you can ask for help in your classes," he says. "This has been an easy transition from high school, and even though we are part of the first coed class, I don't feel that we are treated any differently."

He has a message for the entire CSE community: alumni, current students, faculty, staff, and anyone who loves basketball, "Our opening game is on November 19 – the very first men's basketball game in the history of the school," he admonishes. "We expect a full house!"

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Founded in 1899 by the Sisters of Charity of Saint Elizabeth, the College of Saint Elizabeth has a strong tradition of concern for the poor, for developing leadership in a spirit of service and social responsibility, and a commitment to the promotion of women as full partners in society.

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