TCNJ Magazine - Fall 2016

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12 FALL 2016 12 FALL 2016 > I knew the reputation TCNJ had for preparing teachers. I liked the program and I loved the campus, and my grandmother— Florence Snediker Vela—is a 1956 Trenton State graduate. > My goal is to become a high school history teacher. The education at TCNJ is wonderful. When I did my field experience for teaching, I felt prepared and confident for the two weeks I had in the classroom. > I would love to coach soccer or football. If there is an opportunity to coach, I would go for that 100 percent. > I only kicked for the football team my senior year at Hillsborough [New Jersey] High School. It never crossed my mind I might kick at the college level. I'm very glad I've had the opportunity. > As a sophomore, I had a stress fracture in my leg and had only one kickoff. I worked hard during the off-season, and junior year I handled kickoffs, field goals, and PATs [points after touchdown]. > One of my proudest moments was helping the team win against Rowan last year. We defeated Rowan 20–0 and were able to send our graduating seniors out with four straight wins, including a win on the last game of their careers against one of our biggest rivals. SPORTS > How I Got Here > BRIAN NAGY '17 What do pigskin and pig rescue have in common? Nagy, the Lions' football kicker. 12 FALL 2016 > I grew up in the firehouse. My dad has been a volunteer with Hillsborough Fire Company No. 3 since I was born. My mom is part of the auxiliary. When I was 16, I applied to be a junior member. It was the right thing to carry on the tradition. Becoming a firefighter is one of the greatest things I've ever done. > I am a Firefighter 1, which means I can go into burning buildings. I started in January and it took months of classroom and hands-on training. I do this to help our community. When I answer the call, I do the best I can to help anyone who needs it. > When the [Hillsborough] warehouse fire broke out in February, I was at TCNJ when we were dispatched. Once I realized the magnitude of the fire, I drove back and was there for two days. I have been in a burning building only once, during a barn fire. My partner and I rescued a couple of pigs. > I think being a kicker and firefighter overlap. Being a kicker is an adrenaline rush. Being a firefighter reminds me to stay calm. I know my job. I know I can do it. I can count on the people around me. You need to remember the goal, what the final outcome should be, and how to accomplish it. —as told to Joe Zedalis PRAIRIE

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