Girls’ Varsity Basketball star shoots for college
March 30, 2011 • Olivia Porath, Staff Writer
Filed under Student Highlight
Put her against any basketball player and see her opponent leave with newfound respect for her, because when it comes to basketball, Bre’Ana Strong isn’t just playing around. She means business.
“I love playing it [basketball]. It gets my anger out,” Strong says.
Since her freshman year Strong has been on Howell High School’s girls varsity basketball team, and now as a senior she’s preparing to take advantage of her skills. Just months away from graduation, Strong will be the only girl basketball player from HHS who will go to college for basketball this year.
“It [basketball] gave me something to do, and I knew I had a chance to get into college,” Strong says.
Confidence sure is the key for Strong, because she was recently awarded $88,000 worth of grants from Milwaukee School of Engineering. She plans to divide up the grants as tuition money for four years of college. MSOE has offered Strong an instant spot into their nursing program, instead of putting her on a waiting list.
“They have a really good nursing program,” she says. “I like helping people. As of now I’d rather work in the cancer ward where kids are at.”
Strong’s life didn’t always revolve around basketball, however. Originally as a young child she participated in ballet due to her mom’s encouraging push in participation. But ballet got old fast, and her dad quickly stepped up to teach her the ropes of shooting hoops.
“I wanted to do a more physical sport so I got into basketball,” she says after squirming at the girly nature of ballet.
Strong “got into basketball” as soon as she could: second grade. From then on she has continued into various basketball programs. Officially starting the sport in sixth grade, Strong joined Amateur Athletic Union (travel basketball) and worked her way up in rank as the years passed. The best opportunity arrived in high school when she became a member of HHS’s girls varsity basketball team, an amazing feat. But her basketball honors didn’t come without a price: several injuries such as a broken thumb, torn meniscus and anterior cruciate ligament (ACL), and strained muscles in the shoulders have interfered with her schedule many times.
Besides basketball and nursing, Strong has other activities that she enjoys. As a fellow staff member on HHS’s student newspaper, the Main Four, she involves herself in designing and editing the weekly page. She is also currently enrolled in a digital imaging class.
“I like newspaper and digital imaging because I love being creative. I don’t really consider it work because I love designing so much!”
Though Strong doesn’t look forward to school, she will look towards the light at the end of the tunnel: nursing. Then ideally, Strong will find her dream man and be swept off her feet into a marriage directly after college.
Whether she’s healing wounds of others or dominating on the basketball court, Bre’Ana Strong will continue to embrace the life of the game. Along with skills that were acquired after many years into basketball, priceless gifts such as insight and perspective on the sport will channel into the ideal lifestyle of nursing.
“When you’re younger it’s [basketball] fun, but when you get older it’s so much different. It’s much more than a game.”