CATCHING UP WITH GABBY OGLESBY '14

(Gabby Oglesby '14, photo by John Bell, www.touchalifephotography.com)
(Gabby Oglesby '14, photo by John Bell, www.touchalifephotography.com)

What were some key reasons you decided to attend Guilford?

I chose Guilford because I felt a sense of inclusion. I didn’t want to get lost in the life of a regular college student. I wanted people to know who I was and likewise, I wanted to know who they were. Guilford not only provided me with a great education, but I also met people who have had a lasting impact on my life. 

What were some factors that helped you realize the success you enjoyed as a student at Guilford?

I can name several professors who made me realize the success I enjoyed as a student. There were so many times I received feedback on work, which encouraged me and pushed me to reach even higher. They believed in me to a level I didn’t even think I was capable of reaching. I am forever grateful for them and what I achieved as a student.

What were some factors that helped you realize the success you enjoyed as an athlete at Guilford?

I realized I was successful when people knew who I was. So many people approached me and said, “Hey Gabby, good game!” and sometimes I didn’t even know who they were, but it felt great to know that someone came out to our games and made the effort to acknowledge me when they saw me around campus. Another factor was when I became lifelong friends and sisters with my teammates. We grew together, won two ODAC championships together, and now we support each other in our post-college lives. To me, that’s success.

What have you been up to since you left Guilford?

After graduating from Guilford, I accepted a technology consulting position with Deloitte Consulting and moved to Washington, DC. I also started a basketball personal training program for kids grades K-12 called Hoop Dreams. I’ve been able to take my playing experience and what I’ve learned throughout the years and share it with the youth of the community. It’s been a very rewarding experience.

How has Guilford prepared you for where you are today?

Guilford not only prepared me educationally, but it also prepared me for dealing with a diverse group of people. As a worker in corporate America, as well as an entrepreneur, I often face many different opinions and personalities. Guilford is a place that embraces that and I have been able to take that and use it in my careers.

What about your experience as a Guilford student-athlete has helped you the most?

Guilford Athletics, in particular, prepared me to be competitive and dedicated to the work I do. I treat both of my careers as a game; I work hard, I play to win, and if I lose, I learn from it and come out harder the next game. As a student-athlete, you have to perfect time-management skills. Getting homework done and meeting deadlines, while practicing and playing games all week, has taught me so much about managing my time in a smart way. I would say time management is one of the best qualities you can have. I always make sure I prioritize what needs to be done so that things run smoothly.

What do you miss most about Guilford?

The thing I miss most about Guilford is the people. Guilford has some of the most kind and thoughtful faculty and students I’ve ever met. I still keep in touch with a number of faculty members and have long-lasting relationships with many classmates as well. I often receive messages from people just checking in to say hello and it means the world to know someone is thinking of me.

What are your future plans?

With Hoop Dreams growing rapidly, my plan is to open a gym where kids, especially underprivileged kids, can go play basketball and have an opportunity to improve their skills. There is a need for more places where kids can go and get the fundamental teaching they need in order to be successful without paying extreme prices. I hope to own a gym and open my doors up to them so they can have the same opportunities that I had growing up.

What is one thing a high school student-athlete considering college needs to know?

I think every high school student-athlete needs to know the college experience can either be the best four years of your life, or the worst. You have the power to get involved, play a sport, dedicate yourself in the classroom, and have some experiences that you will never forget. It’s important not to get lost in just going through the motions. Be the best student and athlete you can be, because sadly, it’ll be over before you know it.

Identify and describe one or two of your favorite moments or experiences while at Guilford.

My favorite memory at Guilford was winning an ODAC championship. Fans traveled to Salem, Virginia, to see us play and I don’t remember being happier than that moment on the court with my teammates/sisters. The sense of pride we felt can’t be explained. I am honored whenever I come back to Guilford and see those two banners hanging and to know that I was on the team that made it happen. 

- Gabby Oglesby '14