Marissa Sheva wins with dual athletics and a full academic schedule

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — With one year at Penn State under her belt, Marissa Sheva feels confident and relaxed at juggling academics with her role as a member of both the women’s soccer and track and field teams. Scheduling isn’t easy, but Sheva has adjusted to her busy campus life and is succeeding on the field and in the classroom.

The sophomore majoring in security and risk analysis (SRA) in the College of Information Sciences and Technology (IST) said she considers it a “huge honor” to represent Penn State Athletics and is working hard to do so both on and off the field.

Named a 2015 Big Ten Freshman of the Week, Sheva was a member of the U.S. U-14 and U-15 Women’s National Soccer teams and one of the most successful cross-country runners in her high school’s history. She has been competing in various sports since she was 4 years old but soon gravitated to soccer and track. When choosing a university, Penn State stood out because of its strong athletics program and commitment to academic leadership, she said.

“I love to compete, and I think that’s what pushed me to play sports in college,” said Sheva. “Being a student-athlete is definitely a challenge, but it keeps me on my toes and busy at all times.”

Sheva said she is driven mostly by the expectations she sets for herself and by her coaches, but has been overwhelmed by the support of her coaches and IST professors, whose willingness to work with her travel schedule makes it possible for her to succeed at athletics and also in academics.

“Even though I’m only in my first semester as an SRA student, I am finding that everything I am learning is very practical and hands-on,” she said. “SRA is a relatively new field but a relevant one, and I really like how it ties technology to international current events.”  

Aside from the support of her coaches and professors in the College of IST, Sheva credits her parents and siblings in Sellersville, Pennsylvania, with keeping her on track.

“My family continues to be my biggest supporters," said Sheva. "They have never missed a home game, and I’m sure that will remain true throughout my career at Penn State.” 

Last Updated September 29, 2016