UC Santa Barbara
Schmidt has compiled a 3.51 grade-point-average as a business-economics major and a sports management minor at UC Santa Barbara. Schmidt has already completed her bachelor’s degree and is now enrolled in a master’s program in economics. She has made UCSB’s Dean’s List (3.75 GPA or higher in a given quarter) on three occasions – Fall, 2008; Fall 2010; and Winter 2011. She was awarded the women’s volleyball team’s Golden Eagle award winner last year, which honors the player who holds the highest GPA amongst his/her teammates. She is a two-time Big West All-Academic Team honoree. She was named the 2010-11 Big West Scholar Athlete of the Year for UCSB, an award bestowed on just one male and one female athlete from each conference member’s institution. She has accomplished all of this while also spending her time on UCSB’s Student-Athlete Advisory Board for two years, one of which she was a co-chair of the community service subcommittee in the SAAB council. Schmidt’s career goal is to work in the non-profit industry, combining her economics and sports management degrees in an effort to work for an organization that provides sports programs for underprivileged youth.
Named a team captain for her senior season, Schmidt has evolved into a leader of the team. Combined with her impressive effort on the court, it is her drive and work ethic that has drawn her teammates close to her. In what was to be her sophomore season Schmidt received a medical redshirt after tearing her patella tendon, which required surgery. But, as her coach Kathy Gregory said, “she came back with a passion and energy I’d never seen.” Following her injury, Schmidt was named an All-Big West First Team choice as a sophomore, helping to lead UCSB into the postseason for the first time in three seasons. Because of her drive and determination to get back on the court at a superior level, Schmidt was one of UCSB Athletics “Great Examples,” a feature that highlights few of the 450-plus student-athletes at UCSB.
Schmidt is one of the most – if not the most – active members of UCSB’s 450 student-athletes. She has worked extensively with the Special Olympics as a sport management intern helping to plan fundraising events and sports competitions. She has served as a Special Olympics coach for bocce ball and gymnastics, helping children with intellectual disabilities improve their motor skills. Schmidt has also worked as a course instructor for the Special Olympics, working to develop new coaches into the Special Olympics programs. While working with the Special Olympics, she rallied her Gaucho teammates and coaches to help support her and the special education children in a local all-day event as she worked with various children from across the Tri-Counties. The support of her Gaucho team was noticeable at the track meet as her teammates and coaches helped contribute to the day’s success. “She drove the rest of the players to give back to the community with her leadership and desire,” Gregory said. Working as an intern for Team-Up World, a company that provides fundraising for non-profit organizations, Schmidt helped provide underprivileged children with free after-school sports programs. She has twice served as a member of the Student-Athlete Advisory Board at UCSB, a council that has members from each team work together to help serve the community and deliver positive messages about UCSB Athletics to the community. She served as a co-chair of the community service projects helping to organize an “Adopt-a-Family” holiday program to help an Isla Vista elementary school purchase playground equipment. Along with her teammates, Schmidt has been active at one of the homeless shelters in Santa Barbara, serving food to the less fortunate. As a Living Scholar at UCSB (a model student-athlete for donors to “sponsor”) Schmidt helped with an annual beach clean-up day that cleared nearby Goleta Beach of debris and foreign objects. As the face of the UCSB volleyball team, she has been featured in numerous athletics-based videos and promotions, never saying no to an opportunity to expand her team’s profile in the community in a positive way.
Entering her final year as a student-athlete at UCSB, Schmidt has already accomplished more than most have in their entire careers. She is a two-time All-Big West First Team selection and could become just the sixth player in school history to be honored three times. As a junior Schmidt was honored as a First Team All-West Region selection and an Honorable Mention All-America, both presented by the AVCA. In all four of UCSB’s tournaments last season, she was named to the All-Tournament Team, illustrating her consistent and dominant play. In 2010 she led the Gauchos in hitting percentage (.324, fifth in the Big West, 114th in the nation), total blocks (90) and block assists (78) and currently ranks No. 10 in school history in career hitting percentage (.300). She set career-highs in kills, service aces, solo blocks (which is third-highest in school history) and block assists. Her 3.00 kills per set were second on the team and she is on pace to surpass 1,000 career kills this season. Schmidt had 17 matches in which she had 10 or more kills and she posted a double-double with 14 kills and 10 block assists on Oct. 1 vs. nationally-ranked Long Beach State. As a sophomore when she was named an All-Big West First Teamer, Schmidt was second on the team with 279 total kills (2.34 per set) while hitting a team-high .330, which was the third-highest mark in the Big West and 86th in the nation. Her 80 blocks were second on the team as were her 11 solo blocks. That year she also ranked in the school’s single-game top-10 with her .714 hitting percentage. She had 16 matches with double-digit kills as a sophomore while tallying at least one block in all but one match.