« Volleyball 2017

Simone Lee

School

Penn State

Position
Outside Hitter
Major
Broadcast Journalism

Classroom

Simone Lee is a broadcast journalism major minoring in African American studies. She plans to be a public speaker following her volleyball career.  Lee opted for these two fields because it was the perfect fit. She was an academic decathlete in high school and plans on using her experiences and her platform to deliver hard-hitting news. She did an internship with Penn State Athletics Strategic Communications Department and learned the values of the sports information industry.

“Public speaking is a great platform that not a lot of people want to be a part of,” said Lee. “I am glad to say that public speaking is my calling and because of this great gift, I want to be able to use it to speak to the public about important issues. Broadcast journalism seemed like the perfect fit. In college at Penn State I originally started out as a psychology major but realizing that it just wasn’t for me, I remembered my high school experience with public speaking and production, and I decided to give broadcast journalism a try. With this major, I, will not only be able to speak to the public about matters in the world, but I will also be able to use my sports back ground to perhaps even do some sportscasting as well.”

Character

Lee is a 2017 team captain. She was also honored by the Black Student Union and was given the 2017 Serena Williams Award. She credits her strength of character to her freshman season. She did not play a lot, but she knew her role. She alluded to the fact it can be tough on people when you don’t play, but she knew she had to be ready at any moment to step in and play. She is a leader by example, working hard every day, and she believes that no one gets an easy pass—that you have to work for everything you get in life.

“Being a team captain, in my opinion, exemplifies leadership,” Lee said. “In this position, you not only have to lead by what you say but how you act. I think that I’m not the most vocal captain, but the way I play shows my teammates, especially the younger girls, that working hard is the best way to play and live your life. I think that no one gets an easy pass at anything, including sports, and working for everything you have not only builds character but sets a precedent for years to come. It shows people that this is a standard that is set for either yourself or the program you’re apart of, and it should never go below that.”

Community

Lee volunteered for the Hunger Task Force in Milwaukee, Wisc. She also has participated in Penn State’s Panhellenic Dance Marathon for three years. She has spent time as a Special Olympics volunteer, while also being a volleyball camp counselor.

Competition

Lee is a 2016 AVCA First Team All-American, a unanimous All-Big Ten selection, earned Big Ten Player of the Week and espnW National Player of the Week following a 30-kill performance in an upset of No. 1 Minnesota. She finished 2016 with 503 kills, the fourth-most during a single season in 25-point rally scoring era. So far in 2017, she has tied her career-high of 30 kills in a five-set battle against Texas A&M and helped the Nittany Lions take down Stanford twice. She earned a Big Ten Player of the Week honor in 2017. She reached 1,000 kills in a 3-2 win over Ohio State.  In her freshman season, she was a key bench player in the Nittany Lions’ NCAA Championship run. Simone has helped PSU finish in the top 10 in the national rankings in each of her three seasons so far.