Courting Community

Women's Volleyball Team

Kelly Peterson

Kelly Peterson’s college experience has been about community: “I did a Fridays (at Calvin) visit and that really was the deciding factor,” she said. “The people that I met here were genuine; I felt a real sense of community.”

That feeling has only solidified three years into her collegiate career, particularly because of her affiliation with the Knights volleyball team. “Coming in I had the mindset that I just wanted to do the sport—just play volleyball. I didn’t realize how much my teammates would affect me. Now I know the team dynamic of having community that you don’t even realize your freshman year.

“Now, I’m doing the sport because I like to hang out with these people, including our coach,” she said. “I had this perception of college coaches being detached from the team—just running practices and games. Our coach serves as a friend and a mentor and a mom.”

Coming from Ramsey, Minn., Kelly discovered Calvin through an internet search, and Kelly is happy to feel such a connection to it now. As a biology major who hopes to work in conservation, Kelly found Calvin to be the perfect fit on and off the court. “I’ve always been interested in studying creation. Calvin is a great place for that; I didn’t realize how much I would like being able to talk with professors about my faith.”

Kelly is still letting the 2010 national championship feeling sink in—a part of the whole Calvin experience that she had never really thought possible. “Winning the finals was unbelievable,” she said. “I don’t necessarily remember the points we played during those games, but I remember the feeling, and I don’t think it’s going away anytime soon. We did it, we actually did it.”

Read more in the Knightfile