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Division III Week Profile: Valentina Morakis '22

Wellesley College basketball senior guard Valentina Morakis (Frank Poulin Photography).
Wellesley College basketball senior guard Valentina Morakis (Frank Poulin Photography).

Division III Week is an annual opportunity for all individuals associated with a Division III institution or conference to recognize the powerful impact of athletics and student-athletes on the campus and surrounding community. As part of Division III Week, Wellesley College basketball senior guard Valentina Morakis (Long Island, N.Y.) shared her thoughts on the Division III experience at Wellesley College.

What made you choose Wellesley College?

I chose Wellesley because of its excellent academics and chance to continue playing basketball. Additionally, I really appreciate Wellesley's motto, Non ministrari sed Ministrare, because it inspires me to reflect and take action in change.

What do you enjoy most about being a Division III student-athlete? 

What I enjoy most about being a D3 student-athlete is being able to pursue basketball, one of my biggest passions, in an environment that allows me to strike a balance between competition and academics. This flexibility has enabled me to thrive in both settings and also allowed me to explore other passions of mine, such as civic engagement. I also really appreciate being surrounded by like-minded students in the athletic community. Since we're not awarded athletic scholarships, we all play for the love of our sport, team, and coaches.

Can you give us a brief description of your major and why you chose it?

I am a biology major at Wellesley. Edward O. Wilson coined the term biophilia to describe what he believed is an innate human tendency to seek connections with other forms of life. From a young age, I have always been curious about living organisms and the interactions they share with their surroundings. I decided to major in biology because I couldn't think of a more fascinating way to study life. It is such a vast field allowing for the exploration of anything from microbes to human evolution, so I knew that by choosing biology, I would never be bored.

What are your future plans?

Upon graduation, I will spend a year doing research in developmental and regenerative biology at Baylor College of Medicine while I await for medical school acceptances.

Are you a part of any groups/clubs on campus?

I am the alternative break coordinator for the Ministrare Council, which is a group of students who run Wellesley's civic engagement programs. Recently, I've organized a service trip to the Wellesley Village Church's soup kitchen to help with food insecurity in the Boston community. Currently, I'm organizing a campus-wide food drive where the donations will be distributed to local community fridges and mutual aid networks in the greater Boston area.

A fun fact about you!?

I lived in Brazil for 4 years and Greece for 6 years growing up and am fluent in both Portuguese and Greek. I like cooking, baking, reading, watching movies, and traveling.

Wellesley Athletics strives for excellence at the conference, regional, and national levels, while providing opportunities for students to achieve their potential and learn the values of discipline, leadership, critical thinking, and responsibility to oneself and others.