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Athletes turn to Trosper for academic advice

Stacy Lane

Add athletics to the list of demands on students at De Anza College and the task of being a successful student can seem near impossible.

Enter Matt Trosper, a man whose job it is to lend his hand to make sure that all athletes at De Anza are just that: successful.

As athletic academic adviser, Trosper is responsible for helping athletes at De Anza plan their schedules and prepare to transfer. Athletes who wish to transfer require strategic schedule planning, as they must adhere to the transfer rules and regulations dictated by the National Collegiate Athletic Association.

Trosper acts as a guilding hand, planning and tracking athletes progress. Athletes are put in contact with Trosper by the Counseling 100 class or by their coach,, and all athletes are required to meet with him.

Each athlete has a preliminary meeting with Trosper to determine his or her individual needs. Trosper guides the athletes through the stringent NCAA requirements and timelines. Under NCAA rules, students can remain at De Anza no longer than two years, which can put extra strain on already stressed students. Trosper helps to set the individual athlete’s academic schedule, as well as offer tools and advice on their personal life so that the student can balance all priorities and transfer on time.

NCAA and De Anza require athletes to maintain at least a 2.0 GPA, and so Trosper also tracks athletes’ grades and attendance records to keep track of their progress.

In the event that an athlete falls behind, Trosper immediately arranges a meeting with the student, the coach, and often the teacher as well. His goal is to locate the problem, address it and set the athlete back on the path to success.

Trosper understands that students can have many obligations, such as school, work, family and social demands. He also understands that athletes have one more demand on this list, and wants to ensure that De Anza’s athletes are as victorious as possible. He offers advice on managing the athletes’ complete set of priorities.

Trosper graduated from University of the Pacific in 1989 and was hired at De Anza that same summer as a general counselor. Two years later, the position as athletic academic advisor became available and Trosper accepted the job.

“I fell in love with it,” Trosper says, a notion that explains his 19 years of continuous service to the position.

Seeing the athletes succeed is what drives him, and he points out a particular success story as one of his most treasured memories.

About 15 years ago, Trosper advised a football student who was involved in gangs and rough life. Under Trosper’s guidance, the student went on to graduate and transfer, leaving his hard life behind.

Trosper sees many athletes in tough positions with many obstacles in their way, but he thrives on guiding them to higher ground and accomplishment. Trosper said, “It’s the best part of my job.”

Stacy Lane is a staff reporter for La Voz. Contact her at [email protected]