Jan. 8, 2021

Time management key to Schulich soccer star's academic success

Netminder Jake Ruschkowski among 211 Dinos athletes named Academic All-Canadians
Soccer goaltender Jake Ruschkowski in action for the Dinos
Soccer goaltender Jake Ruschkowski in action for the Dinos. David Moll

On the soccer pitch, Jake Ruschkowski is tasked with not allowing goals. Off the field, he is netting his own.

The Schulich School of Engineering student was recently named a 2019-2020 Academic All-Canadian, one of 211 University of Calgary athletes to be honoured. He was also one of 20 from engineering.

“It’s great to be recognized for the hard work that was put in towards athletics as well as academics,” Ruschkowski said. “I set goals for myself at the start of the year and truly wanted the best out of myself both on and off the soccer field.”

He was also one of six fellow Dinos soccer players to be recognized from Schulich, joining Yassin Bayoumy, Derek Brust, Liam Hunter, Adam Huskic and Dominik Zuczek.

A Year to Remember

The 2019 soccer season was an historic one for the Dinos. They captured second place in Canada West, earning the conference silver medal and attended their first-ever national championship.

Ruschkowski was a key cog in the team’s success, playing every minute of every game, and was rewarded for his efforts. He was named a First Team Canada West All-Star, a Second Team All-Canadian and was one of five nominees for University of Calgary Male Athlete of the Year.

It’s one thing to have athletic success, but quite another to do it while also chasing a 4.0 GPA.

“Time management is the most important factor,” the Calgary-born Ruschokowski said. “It is so crucial to understand your priorities, use your time wisely and make the most of every spare minute.”

Time on His Hands

With the COVID-19 pandemic still looming over sports, it has allowed Ruschkowski and his teammates some time to focus more on their academics.

The fourth-year student is taking mechanical engineering with a biomedical specialization, as he is interested in sport science and biomechanics.

“I expect myself to do the best I can at whatever I do,” Ruschkowski said. “That doesn’t mean, however, that I stress myself over a 4.0 GPA. I know that if I put the work in, the results will reflect the effort.”

And speaking of time, there’s one other activity he can do a little more of right now.

“I think an underrated aspect of balancing athletics and academics is getting proper rest,” he said. “It is so easy to burn out. Making sure you take breaks when needed and getting sleep at night is essential to working efficiently and effectively when you’re awake.”