Barbadian Soccer Player Pursues Dream, Enrolls in Architecture Program
Feb 28, 2022
Building a career, rather than just a daily work obligation, requires finding a role that you love. And finding what you love calls for a bit of upfront vision: Where do you want to be in five, 10, 20 years? In what position do you picture yourself over the long term? What types of roles do you want to fill?
For many young adults, these types of questions can be difficult to answer–but not if you’re Jade Clarke. She’s just following the blueprint.
The first-year architecture major recently traded in the green palm trees of Bridgetown, Barbados, for the illuminating streetlights of Scranton, Pennsylvania, for the purpose of attending Marywood University’s School of Architecture. Obviously, the climate wasn’t a factor in Jade’s decision to attend Marywood; rather, it was Marywood’s renowned architecture program.
“I fell in love with Marywood’s architecture program,” said Clarke. “I remember there were a few programs in Canada and one in Elizabethtown that I considered, but Marywood topped them all. What stood out was the five-year program and being able to study in Italy. When I finally saw photos of Marywood’s campus, I was hooked. But I will say, having the beach at my backdoor was pretty nice. I miss home sometimes, but I enjoy the independence.”
To put it lightly, Jade understands goals better than most. For those who aren’t aware, the 19-year-old Bajan is a goalkeeper for the Barbados Women's National Football Team. Initially drafted by the team, Jade is unable to join her team for this year’s Confederation of North, Central America, and Caribbean Association Football (CONCACAF) Women’s Championship Qualifiers. Winners of the tournament will earn a qualifying spot in the 2023 FIFA Women's World Cup in Australia and New Zealand, as well as the 2024 Summer Olympics in France.
Jade’s decision to choose school over everything else is a perfect example of the necessary sacrifices it takes to achieve difficult goals.
“I look forward to joining Marywood’s soccer program,'' said Clarke. “The team has great chemistry, and I really like the coach. Even though we do things a little differently in Barbados, I believe I can be a real contributor next season.”
Jade’s fascination with architecture isn’t surprising considering that she’s from Barbados’ historic capital, Bridgetown. Sometimes referred to as “Little England”, Bridgetown has a Colonial feel reminiscent of a miniature England, and, of all the British Caribbean islands, it boasts the largest array of preserved buildings and great houses reflecting the influence of British Georgian architecture. Colonization of the Caribbean left its mark, not only through immigration and wealth, but also through the architecture left behind.