Since a younger age, Devan Taylor has at all times been surrounded by feminine athletes. She would tag alongside along with her sister to all her volleyball practices and begin taking part in on the again wall as she aspired to be a collegiate athlete like her. Taylor realized from her sister’s collegiate volleyball expertise and used that newfound data when her school recruitment journey started. Devan Taylor now serves as Clemson’s beginning libero and is ending her sophomore yr as a bioengineering main.
The Houston, Texas native grew up in an space that supplied many alternatives for younger ladies like her to pursue their ardour for volleyball. Because of the reputation of the game in Texas and her older sister, it was solely pure for Taylor to start out taking part in. Taylor is eternally grateful for everybody who has helped her alongside the way in which, particularly Kara Pratt, who she offers essentially the most credit score; Pratt is a detailed household good friend who serves because the recruiting coordinator at her hometown membership volleyball crew. “Loads of totally different folks at my membership and highschool had my finest curiosity in thoughts and performed an element in my success.”
Being a collegiate volleyball participant isn’t just every thing. Taylor’s message to the subsequent technology of feminine volleyball gamers is to be well-rounded in all they pursue. “It isn’t nearly being the most effective volleyball participant; you need to be the most effective particular person.”
Exterior of her sister, Taylor idolizes most of the proficient ladies on the US Nationwide Volleyball Workforce, particularly Morgan Hentz. Hentz performed volleyball at Stanford as their libero and is now an American skilled volleyball participant with the USWNT. “The primary time I noticed her (Hentz) play, I knew I needed to be identical to her.” Taylor acknowledges that with out these feminine function fashions in her life as a baby, she won’t be taking part in Division I volleyball.
At Clemson, Taylor is part of extra than simply volleyball. In early February of 2022, Athletic Director Graham Neff and Senior Affiliate AD/Senior Girl Administrator Stephanie Ellison-Johnson introduced the formation of POWER: Ladies’s Management Academy. In its inaugural yr and as part of its second cohort, Taylor works immediately with POWER to empower and develop feminine student-athletes to change into leaders of their workplaces, household and neighborhood. “Whereas working with POWER, we get to see what persons are doing for ladies’s sports activities at Clemson.”
In celebration of Nationwide Ladies and Ladies in Sports activities Day, Taylor is thrilled that girls’s sport is a subject of debate, because it didn’t at all times use to get the protection it does now. The world of girls’s sports activities has been ever-changing since Title IX’s passage in June of 1972, which jumpstarted this coalition for the illustration of girls’s athletics in any respect ranges. Most significantly, the inclusivity of girls within the closely male-dominated sports activities environment has introduced alternatives to thousands and thousands of girls and ladies throughout the US and the world.
Though Taylor is uncertain of what the way forward for ladies’s sports activities could appear to be, she is worked up to see the place it goes because it continues to foster new alternatives for ladies like her on and off the court docket.