Senior Katie Hulme commits to Emory for D3 volleyball

November 27, 2018 — by Megan Chen and Jayne Zhou

At the end of her sophomore year, standout volleyball player Katie Hulme began her college application process. After sending countless emails to college recruiters and sending endless videos of her games, her application process finally came to an end early this year when the senior committed to Emory University in Atlanta, whose team competes at the Division 3 level.

Impressively, Hulme is a relative newcomer to the sport, having started playing volleyball in eighth grade. Before Hulme delving into volleyball, she played club soccer for the De Anza Thorns club team in middle and elementary school. This fall, she played outside hitter for the school team and a middle for her Vision Volleyball club team.

“In eighth grade, I was just done with soccer,, so I quit,” Hulme said. “I started playing volleyball with friends, then I made varsity freshman year, and it just progressed from there.”  

Club volleyball exposed her to the possibility of playing volleyball in college. She said the club she played on was “really big on recruiting.”

“It was really during the end of sophomore year and beginning of junior year that I was really reaching out to coaches, calling them, sending them my tournament schedules and making videos,” Hulme said.

For Hulme, the stress of the application process occurred mostly a year ago during the recruiting process, and her current application process is less stressful compared to other non-athletes. She only has to apply to Emory, which she “knows I’m going to go to.”

According to Hulme, she had multiple offers from Division 1 schools to play volleyball, so the decision to play for a Division 3 school was tough. She had offers from schools like Columbia, Princeton and New York University; however, the lack of scholarship money from the Ivy Leagues made them less appealing.

“I was really looking to go Division 1 and I had several Division 1 opportunities, but when I talked it out with my family, I decided to go Division 3 because of the higher quality academics, and because Division 3 volleyball is less time-consuming,” Hulme said.

The opportunities offered at Emory were ultimately what sealed her decision.

“I could study abroad at Emory, where I wouldn’t be allowed to at the other schools,” Hulme said. “Division 1 schools are also pretty big on offseason and over the summer I would have to stay on campus and not go home.”

Her major also clashed with the rigorous schedule necessary to play for a Division 1 school. She said her major of choice, pre-med, would be hard to tackle at a Division 1 school. She also considered the great pre-med program at Emory a factor in her decision.

Hulme looks forward to her future at Emory and sees it as the perfect place for her to balance her passion for volleyball and her interest in medicine.

“After one day on the campus, I got this feeling that’s hard to describe, but I knew it was my school,” Hulme said. “My hopes as an athlete are to win the NCAA tournament again, study abroad, make some life long friends and get into a great medical school.”

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