Transitioning from collegiate athletics into adulthood and professional careers can be tough. P.A.W. Journey understands this challenge and prepares its students so they begin with the end in mind. When transitioning from “FootBALL-2-Business After the Game,” there’s a learning curve, and P.A.W. Journey prepares its former scholar-athlete to be the educators.
Each fall, a diverse panel of former players leads a private session with current juniors and seniors on the reality of this transitioning from Ball-2-B.A.G.
The diversity represented ranges from smooth and successful evolutions to transitions filled with struggles, including depression. The sharing of best practices, challenges and testimonies gives our upperclassmen rarely told perspectives from Clemson football alumni.
Our 2021 panel was brought back in full force, featuring candid discussions and Q&A between current and former Tigers, Dwayne Allen, Ben Boulware, Stephone Anthony, Kendall Joseph, Jock McKissic and Chad Smith. From networking to starting a business, our panelists provided excellent insight into their professional journeys, all while providing high praise for P.A.W. Journey and the leadership of the program.
In 2019, Jarvis Jenkins, Kyle Parker, Byron Maxwell, Rod Byers, Mark Richardson, and CJ Spiller shared their transitional knowledge and experience. Stevie Baggs, retired NFL veteran, current actor and motivational speaker, led our panel of educators in delivering a transitional program that gave insight, awareness and fresh perspectives on the transitional period that lies before our Clemson Football scholar-athletes.
Our young leaders traditionally engage with a panel of former players, in person, discussing transitions into their professional careers. Though COVID protocol changed our methods, the incredible mentorship of the Clemson Football alumni remained steady! These former players offered to be matched by interests, professional goals, and personalities with our seniors, to impart wisdom and provide support during their upcoming transitions. It is a testament to the program that there is a constant commitment to pour back into the future colleagues, leaders, and developing men on the roster. As leadership is shared, it is doubled throughout P.A.W. Journey.
In 2018, Daniel Andrews, Tajh Boyd, Jamie Harper, Dalton Freeman, Jonathan Meeks and Justin Miller shared their transitional knowledge and experience. Stevie Baggs, retired NFL veteran, current actor and motivational speaker, led our panel of educators in delivering a transitional program that gave insight, awareness and fresh perspectives on the transitional period that lies before our Clemson Football scholar-athletes.
For upperclassman Darien Rencher, the program was impactful and authentic.
“It helped frame what you can do with ball and without ball but also how to be a successful man. I thought that was very impactful. All guys who had different life experiences, some high and some low, who we all could learn from, it was authentic for us, and that’s what we need is to hear real-life experiences so we can apply them to our real lives.”