Thursday, December 01, 2022

SFSU’s Brian Jackson Receives Calhope Award

Julia Schweder and Brian Jackson battle to overcome adversity during their college careers and the examples they set for others are being recognized.

Schweder, a lacrosse player at Occidental College in Los Angeles, and Jackson, a basketball player at San Francisco State, are the first Calhop Courage Award recipients.

The CalHOPE Courage Award is presented by the College Sports Information Directors Association (CoSIDA) and CalHOPE, a crisis support resource for communities affected by public health emergencies or national disasters operated by the California Department of Health Care Services. The award recognizes student-athletes in California colleges and universities who have overcome stress, anxiety, and trauma associated with personal difficulties, injury or life circumstances.

The winners were selected by CoSIDA and an Associated Press panel.

Schweder, the senior defender of Occidental’s lacrosse team, has faced many challenges. Her father, Scott, died by suicide during the summer of his freshman year in 2019. A teammate, Zoe Nussbaum, died two years later. She didn’t play last year, battling depression and a mysterious liver ailment forcing her to return home.

“It is difficult. Obviously, there are ups and downs,” Schweder said. “I think given these situations, when you face them, it is up to you to decide how to deal with those situations. As difficult as it was, I had to go through them, grow up and learn.

“In the Torah, we talked about walking through Death Valley, and you just keep going. You just have to keep going and you don’t have to stop until you get out of it. And that’s exactly what he thought. To me There was no choice but to just keep going.”

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Schweider missed most of the season due to injury, but started all eight games he played, including the Tigers’ final three appearances of the season. She majored in psychology and planned to go to graduate school to become a therapist.

While at Occidental, Schweder was a member of Active Minds, a mental health club on campus, and organized team walks with the American Foundation for Suicide Prevention.

Jackson has found a home in San Francisco State, his fourth school since graduating high school in 2017. He began his college career at Cloud County Community College in Concordia, Kansas, before relocating to Long Beach State. Jackson’s father died of a heart attack while he was a freshman. While living on Long Beach, three childhood friends were shot and killed in Cincinnati, where he grew up, which led to further bouts with anxiety and depression.

Jackson left Long Beach after just 10 games during the 2019-20 season. He transferred to West Virginia State University to live closer to home, but did not play any sports and ended up living out of his car.

After working with a trainer, Jackson relocated to San Francisco State. He was forced to sit out the first half of the season as he was unable to track down his college tapes in time for the regular season, but he played the final 13 games and averaged 5.9 points with 4.4 rebounds off the bench. .

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Jackson is an international relations major. He hopes to work with the NBA or NBA Cares, NBA Africa or the NBA Foundation after graduation.

“I just want to push the statement that it’s okay to ask for help with mental health. I know at times as athletes and then mental health is underrepresented even in minority communities. It’s been told to you that Just be fine, or shake it or whatever the case may be,” Jackson said. “I think it’s something you definitely need to focus on. I hope to be an example, or just someone I can look to for inspiration because I had those people.

$2,500 in names from Schweder and Jackson by Calhop to support mental health services at Occidental and SFSU to support “Beach the Lines,” a free and confidential counseling service for student-athletes operating on both campuses will be donated.

Calhop Courage Award finalists were named in March and April before this year’s winners were selected. Other finalists are Peter Andrews (baseball) of Butte College, Kelsey Blaylock (golf) of Chico State, Johnny Buchanan (volleyball) of The Master University, Julia Scholes (beach volleyball) of USC and Alisha Wilson (basketball and track) of Academy of Art University. ) were.

Athletes will be nominated for the monthly 2023 award starting in September.


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