Victoria and Jane stand on the stairway in Stephens Hall

Top of their game: CBE female student athletes excel in academics and beyond

In March, we celebrate both Women’s History Month and the spirit of athleticism among students in the College of Business by spotlighting two accomplished female athletes.

From the college search process through courses and graduation, student athletes’ experiences are unique from other students. That is the case for Victoria Zozzaro and Jane Shusterman, who said their commitment to their sports and teams has influenced their time in the classroom and in the TU community.

Zozzaro, a junior majoring in mass communication with a minor in marketing, is a diver on the women’s swimming and diving team. Her friend and fellow CBE student, Shusterman, is a junior majoring in business administration with a concentration in marketing and a member of the TU women’s tennis team.

Both following in their fathers’ athletic footsteps and choice of sport, Zozzaro started diving at a young age, while Shusterman started playing tennis at age 6. Unlike many TU students, these women were looking for a way to integrate their sport into their college experience while they were navigating their senior years of high school. As athletes, their top priorities when looking for the ideal college experience were a strong athletic program, a likeable coach and team and location.

“Towson had the best athletic program and lots of opportunities for things to do because of its location,” Zozzaro reflected. “Being a senior, having lots of options was a good thing.”

“Towson gave me all I wanted,” added Shusterman.

Upon arrival as freshmen, Zozzaro and Shusterman found themselves faced with demanding schedules. For the past three years, both women have woken up before 6 a.m. every day for hours of conditioning and practice. They also take full course loads and find time for other responsibilities, like Zozzaro’s part-time job as a kid’s swim instructor.

Despite full schedules and the physical demands of their sports, both athletes find that being a part of their respective teams has helped them to succeed in the College of Business.

“Being an athlete gave me built-in friends and confidence, a connection to the school, the respect of my professors,” Shusterman said. “And I like to work in groups…which we do a lot in our classes.”

Along those same lines, Zazzro found the experience gave a boost to her academic achievement.

“Being an athlete taught me simple things that helped with school, like adaptability and time management,” she said.

How their sports experiences will play into their futures after graduation remains to be seen to Zozzaro and Shusterman Currently, Zozzaro is exploring the idea of working for an airline (like her mom) in marketing or mass communications or becoming a police officer near her hometown in New York. Shusterman is considering a career in project management or sales.

Both students are grateful for the experiences they’ve had as women athletes in the College of Business as well as the opportunity to grow their teamwork and time management skills both in and out of the classroom.

By Sarah Magnotta, Department of Marketing

This story is a part of the colleges monthly CBE Celebrates Diversity Series, which highlights student, faculty and staff stories from our diverse community.