Sometimes a school just clicks for a student. Usually it’s the college’s location, academic programs and faculty that make a decision easy. For student-athletes like Riley Wetmore, former captain of the men’s ice hockey team, UMass Lowell covered those bases and more.
“I chose UMass Lowell because two former teammates of mine in junior hockey played here and absolutely loved the University,” says Wetmore. “When I came and saw the atmosphere, read about the academic programs and learned how friendly and engaged everyone is – from the Chancellor to the students – I knew this was the best choice for me.”
Wetmore expanded his life, academic and athletic skills since coming to campus. On top of classes, papers and exams related to his management and marketing degree, Wetmore appeared in all 111 of the River Hawks’ regular season games since 2009. He captained the team during its historic turn-around 2011-12 season, scoring 39 points, including the overtime winner in the NCAA East Region victory against Miami (Ohio).
“I really enjoy everything about being a student-athlete at UMass Lowell, especially all of the support we get from the community,” he says. “My favorite memory so far is going to the NCAA tournament and beating Miami of Ohio in overtime.”
Prioritizing class work and learning time management skills are vital to student-athlete success, skills Wetmore encourages younger players to learn early and use often.
“Balancing your time and energy between academics and athletics can be tough at times, but if you stay organized, and don't put projects and papers off until the last minute, then it isn't too stressful,” he says. “If my teammates are struggling early on in the semester I tell them to go get help: UMass Lowell has a second-to-none tutoring center, so there is no reason for anyone to fail. They are a huge asset for all students on campus.”
In addition to accolades on the ice, Wetmore’s work outside of the rink earned him the 2012 David Boutin Award. The award recognizes excellence and leadership in sports and academics as well as volunteer efforts and service to the University and City of Lowell.
While Wetmore has his eyes set on a career working in the rink, he knows he’s ready for the work off the ice due to his time at the University.
“Like most of my teammates, I would love to have a professional career in hockey. Either way, I will have a great education and degree from UMass Lowell.”