July 1, 2005
Florida State’s LaQuinta Neely, a senior guard on the women’s basketball team, recently represented Florida State at the NCAA Leadership Conference, held at the Disney Resort in Orlando. The conference lasted for five days, but what Neely gained from the experience is sure to last much longer.
Q&A With Quint:
What was a typical day at the conference?
Quint: “A typical day at the conference was breakfast from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. followed by a speaker. Then a group would present some characteristics of leadership with a 10-15 minute skit. After a short break, we would meet with our color team which was comprised of 25 student-athletes, two administrators and two facilitators. During that meeting, we would discuss qualities of leadership and ways to implement them in your school. Following an hour lunch (12-1 p.m.), we would have another color team session, followed by a Student Athlete Advisory Council session which was a time where new NCAA rules would be explained and also a time where we could voice complaints and discuss issues pertaining to the NCAA. The day’s work concluded with yet another color team session but in this one, the administrators would do most of the talking. We got a short break and then reconvened for dinner at 5:30 p.m. and an evening activity. One night, we cooked for our color team. Another night, we went to Disney World. There was also an evening banquet toward the end of the conference.”
How did it make you feel to represent FSU in this way?
Quint: “It felt good to represent Florida State. I heard a lot of stories from other student-athletes who said that their dream growing up was to play for FSU.”
Did you meet many other student-athletes?
Quint: “I met so many student-athletes it would be hard to try and name them all. I can say out of the about 360 there, I probably met about 150 of them.”
What was the most interesting part of the conference?
Quint: “The most interesting part of the conference was just getting to spend time with other student-athletes from other schools and just learning that they have the same problems and concerns and time constraints as every other student-athlete, no matter how big or small the school.”
What knowledge did you gain from the conference and how do you hope to use it?
Quint: “The conference taught me some valuable leadership skills that are not only applicable in college, but in life. As a senior on the women’s basketball team, I hope to be able to utilize the things I learned this season.”
Did you feel you made a contribution to the conference?
Quint: “I think I made more of a contribution to my color team than to the conference overall because I was around them all of the time. We became a safe circle/environment for everyone to talk freely. I know hearing what other people had to say helped me to grow so I can only hope that my thoughts and feelings helped others as well.”