Play like a panther: Amelia Nathanson commits to Chapman volleyball via Zoom


Photo credit: Audra Nathanson

With over 100 community members watching over Zoom, senior Amelia Nathanson officially signed to play volleyball in college. “It means the world to me to be able to come together and celebrate something that’s really special to me, especially in the midst of coronavirus,” Nathanson said.

By Grace Doyle, Staff Writer

While surrounded by the virtual Archer community on Zoom, senior Amelia Nathanson committed to play Division 3 volleyball at Chapman University on May 20. As an outside hitter and libero for Actyve Volleyball for nine years and a player on Archer’s varsity volleyball team for four years, Nathanson will now take her skills to the collegiate level.

“I really love the team aspect about volleyball,” Nathanson said. “Every volleyball team I have ever been on has been like a second family to me and second home. I know that no matter what kind of day I am having I can just go out on the volleyball court and sort of forget about it and just be in the moment.”

In a question and answer session during the signing, led by Student Body President Grace Wilson, varsity volleyball coach Lainey Gera gave testimonials to Nathanson’s hard work.

“Amelia has worked so hard for this moment so the fact that she was able to achieve such a great goal and she worked her tail off to get to where she is now; she deserves this, “Gera said.” I can not wait to see what happens over the next four years for her.”

As a member of the 2017 CIF champion team, Nathanson made impacts in Archer volleyball and as one of four seniors this year, her role became that of a leader alongside Alizeh Jarrahy, Cydney Johnson and Andrea Campos.

“My role this past season was to lead by example and always give 100 percent to everything I was doing, ” Nathanson said. “And I like to think that I instilled a positive and winning mindset into the whole team throughout the entire season, and every practice and game. ”

Before the accomplishments and accolades, Audra Nathanson said she is proud of the person her daughter has become.

“I’m the most proud that she’s a nice person and that she’s a kind person,” Audra Nathanson said. “I’m so proud of all the accomplishments, but what you want most for your child is to raise a really great human being that kind to others and she is: on the team, on the court, and off the court.  She’s just really sweet nice kid.”

Throughout her years of hard work, Amelia Nathanson said she had to make sacrifices to reach her goals. One example was missing her junior prom for an away tournament.

“I knew I had to prioritize volleyball over my entire social life and any social events that I wanted to go to,” Nathanson said. “At times it was definitely difficult to prioritize volleyball over everything, but now looking back at it I really wouldn’t have done it any other way”

Over Nathanson’s nine years of volleyball, her mother was able to witness her journey since the beginning.

“Her journey has been just unbelievable to watch. What started out I think as a passion or a hobby that was fun has turned into everything she has ever wanted to do,” Audra Nathanson said. “I think it’s been such a great ride for me as her mom to be able to watch her grow into the young woman that she is now and I couldn’t be prouder.

Though the signing ceremony was not in person, Amelia Nathanson took time to reflect on her four-year process of preparing to play in college.

“This processes really long and it does take time and dedication and definitely a lot of patience,” she said. “But in the end, it is definitely worth it.”