Soccer balls and test tubes were all balanced in Jones's life
Balancing a soccer ball on her knee and biology homework with games and practice has given Carrie Jones '06 the skills needed to pursue her dream of becoming an orthopedic surgeon.
Originally from Los Lunas, N.M., Jones chose Adams State College to play soccer, she plans on continuing her education with a goal of becoming an orthopedic surgeon.
"My family and I visited Adams State and I liked the area and the people here," Jones said.
She continued to play soccer all four years and graduates this year magna cum laude.
"Doctor Jones and Doctor Brink always challenged me to do better and were always there to help me with problems," Jones said. "Doctor Brink helped me apply to medical school."
Dr. Benita Brink, associate professor of biology, said she enjoyed Jones as a student.
"It was always a pleasure to have Carrie in my class," Brink said. "She is highly intelligent and articulate. Her quiet, yet confident demeanor has gained her the respect of the other students."
Dr. Marty Jones, professor of chemistry said he appreciated Carrie as a student and her efforts as a work-study in the chemistry labs.
"I've no doubt that she will succeed as a medical student, and following that, as a physician," Marty said. "Carrie interacts well with her peers and has served as a good role model for other female student-athletes who are interested in science."
Carrie Jones is currently on the waiting list for Creighton University in Omaha, Neb.
"If I don't get in, I'll try again next year and work in New Mexico at a medical or research clinic," Jones said. "I'm interested in becoming an orthopedic surgeon. My decision was influenced by playing sports."
Brink said she has the utmost faith in Jones ability.
"Carrie's work ethic and academic abilities are outstanding," Brink said. "I definitely believe she has what it takes to become an orthopedic surgeon."
Jones said although being in a sport and completing her degree in four years was a challenge she felt supported by faculty.
"Everyone was real helpful," Jones said. "As long as I was responsible and did the work my professors would be flexible with making up homework and tests."
Dale Roden is the head women's soccer coach at Adams State College.
"In many ways the Adams State College student-athlete is torn between the demands of academics and athletics," Roden said. "Carrie (know as C.J. by her teammates) not only maintained a high level of commitment to all aspects of her obligations in both of these arenas but climbed to the top." Jones was on the team when soccer officially became a women's sport at Adams State College.
"I really enjoyed playing soccer," Jones said. "I'm very proud I got to do it. My best friends here are girls I played with. We were the inaugural soccer players."
"I honestly don't know if everyone realizes the self-discipline and tenacity that C.J.'s accomplishments have required," Roden said. "C.J. is truly an outstanding student-athlete and teammate. She will be missed as she graduates, although I am personally excited to witness what she will accomplish in the future."
Jones said those who play at Adams State College are here for an education, as opposed to a Division I school where academics are on the side.
"Adams State is a good place to be a student athlete," Jones said.
"One of the other soccer players told me how beneficial it was to her to see Carrie in the library, setting a good example of the importance of regular studying," Marty Jones said. "Significant group work was required both in lecture and laboratory settings for several of the biology and chemistry classes that Carrie took, and she was able to successfully adapt her sports teamwork skills to an academic setting and be a very productive group member."
Her discipline as both an athlete and science major will serve her well in her chosen field.
"After I become a medical doctor I want to practice in a rural area," Jones said. "Advancements in medicine need to be brought to isolated communities and I grew up and went to school in a rural area, it is what I am used to."
This summer Jones will work for the Division of Wildlife based out of Monte Vista.
"I've worked there the last two summers," Jones said. "We work all over the Valley, fixing fence, spraying weeds, helping with youth hunter safety classes. Last year I helped with the big horn sheep survey. The job has a lot of variety."