Five questions with Leah Joseph

Editor’s note: Every Wednesday throughout the offseason, we’ll catch up with volleyball support staff for five questions.

Leah Joseph | Director of Operations | Cheltenham, Md.

Q: How did you fall in love with the game of volleyball?

JOSEPH: “Growing up I played basketball my whole life pretty much and I needed a sports credit, so I started volleyball. After my sophomore year of high school, I just fell in love with the excitement of the game. Every point was a new slate, every hit is different and all of it was so exciting to me. There is no time limit either, so it is completely momentum.”

Q: After high school you went on to play volleyball at Georgia Southern and following that you helped out on the support staff side. What was that like?

JOSEPH: “I was medically ineligible after having so many knee surgeries, so it just wasn’t in my best interest for my future longevity to keep playing my last semester. So, I ended up graduating early and my last year I was a student assistant, which really opened up my eyes to the other side of the game. As a player, you just kind of do what you’re told, with wear this, eat this food, etc. But to see how everything worked and the amount of effort that was put in behind it really made me love the administration side of the game because that is a game within itself, too. I feel just as much pressure as I would on the court and it is pretty competitive.”

Q: Could you narrow down your favorite thing you do for your job?

JOSEPH: “There’s so many (laughing), let’s see. I think my favorite thing is finding new and exciting places to send the team to eat. When we travel on the road, I hate eating at chain places. So, it’s like every week in the fall I try to find an authentic place that the girls would enjoy and kind of gives us a taste of where we are. We travel so much and we go to all of these different places, but there is very few times we have enough time to go out and explore. So, through meals you can get a taste of the environment that you are in.”

Q: You are about to start graduate school here at Tech. What are some practical things you are hoping to get out of your master’s program?

JOSEPH: “My grad school program is in higher education administration, so the biggest reason on why I chose this program is because I feel like I’ve had a bunch of experience on the athletics side of developing student-athletes. And the grad program that I’ve chosen gives me an entire viewpoint on the other side of campus. So, it gives me a dorm life, the psychology within that and how to operate outside of athletics. I do want to end up in athletics down the road, but I don’t think I can help prepare well-rounded student-athletes without understanding both sides of the spectrum completely.”

Q: What kind of role do you try to showcase within your relationship with the volleyball student-athletes?

JOSEPH: “Well, I would say I was just there with playing the game. I’m the youngest person on our staff and I try to use experiences that I had in college because those three years were the biggest growth periods of my entire life. So, I just try to lead them because I think it is important for you to make your own mistakes sometimes, because it teaches you. People told me not to do things or how to operate throughout my entire career, but not until I understood that myself through trial and error. So, I try to guide them in the right direction. But I try to talk to them to really understand what their thought process is towards the decision they are trying to make.”

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