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One athlete’s college experience as a cheerleader, a student and an influencer

Brooke Phillips

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Coming to a university, many student-athletes hope to give 110 percent to their sport and have a memorable college experience. One cheerleader has done just that as she reflects back on her last four years as a Bobcat.

Tynisha Jackson, electronic media senior, has been on the All-Girls cheerleading team ever since she came to Texas State her freshman year.

Jackson knew her heart was in the sport since the age of four when she first started cheering.

“When it came down to what I really wanted to go to practice for, it was more for cheer,” Jackson said. “I was more willing to go to cheer practices or competitions and that’s how I knew I was more of a cheerleader than anything else.”

Arlington is where Jackson calls home, but she wanted to venture outside of the area. Jackson went through the cheerleading team tryouts before her first semester and has become a veteran in the Bobcat world of cheer.

“I was very nervous and I thought tryouts were going to be hectic and cutthroat,” Jackson said. “But they made it a relaxed environment so you’re not as stressed as you think you might be.”

Being a part of the All-Girls team, Jackson cheers on the sidelines at football, volleyball and basketball games. Fans can find Jackson cheering on and supporting peers and competing with her squad.

“I love the game atmosphere,” Jackson said. “The crowd pumps up our team. I also like to compete against other big schools too.”

The Texas State cheer team competes in various competitions throughout the year, and the All-Girls cheer team’s biggest competition is the UCA Nationals held in Orlando, Florida every year.

The Bobcats have won three championship titles in the past. In Jackson’s time at Texas State, the team won the World’s Competition at the UCA Nationals her freshman and sophomore year.

“It was very cool,” Jackson said. “It was cool to come in my first year and help our team get a win.”

When Jackson isn’t on the sidelines of the field or court, she enjoys participating in the different organizations that the university has to offer.

Jackson is a part of the Fellowship of Christian Athletes at Texas State and the Student Ministry. Growing in her faith is important to Jackson, and is grateful for the organizations.

“For Student Ministry, when I first came to college I really wanted to grow in my faith because I really wasn’t too involved in church and those kinds of things before I came to college,” Jackson said. “I always had friends who talked about God and I wanted to learn more about him so I ended up at Student Ministry, and that was a really good decision.”

Staying true to her faith and what she loves to do is why Jackson chose to become an electronic media major. Jackson started out in the medical field, minoring in mass communication, but Jackson made the switch when she fell in love with her minor.

“I think the time is sometimes a harder part of being a student-athlete,” Jackson said. “It’s not too time-consuming, but you do have those times when you feel very overwhelmed because you have so many tests in one week, but you also have to focus when you get to practice. You can’t let those things affect how you perform at games or in practice.”

Jackson’s last year is coming to an end as she plans to graduate in the spring of 2018. Jackson has become a leader after four years as a student-athlete.

“It’s pretty cool being a Bobcat,” Jackson said. “We have a diverse student base, so it’s really cool to see how diverse we are and different cultures that come together. Just being able to cheer here also is such a blessing and I’m always so honored to be able to cheer here.”

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One athlete’s college experience as a cheerleader, a student and an influencer