Home > Emma Conrad 2017 Higgins Recipient

Emma Conrad -
 2017 Kevin Higgins College
Scholarship Grant Recipient

San Diego, CA (December 31, 2017) - Like many others, rugby changed the life of 2017 Kevin Higgins College Scholarship recipient, Emma Conrad. The game gave her a sense of confidence and determination that she never had prior to rugby. “Gaining confidence in myself through rugby has also taught me to take responsibility for myself. I have made heathier choices in all aspects of my life. I am disciplined in my mental and physical health, I eat properly, work hard in school, and choose friends who support my dedication to my rugby goals,” said Conrad.

She was a member of the Fond du Lac Wisconsin Sirens 15s and 7s teams and served as captain from 2015-2017. Her Sirens coach, Amanda Pohle, herself, a 2009 Kevin Higgins Scholarship recipient, was impressed with Emma since the first time she went out for practice as a freshman and during that first season with the Sirens, saw her leadership capabilities.

“Emma suffered a concussion while scoring a try in a tournament and had to sit out the rest of the season, which included watching as her team took second place in state. It was her attitude during this time that impressed me. While most high school freshmen would have quit, Emma remained faithful to her team. She continued to come to practices and was by my side throughout the entire state tournament.

“This was the kind of leadership I wanted and needed for my growing team so without hesitation, I made Emma captain her sophomore year and throughout the next three years I was continually grateful for my decision. For Emma constantly performed her duties with grace, but also went above and beyond her responsibilities in order to improve the group as a whole. Whether it was doing one extra hill, joining a weight training class, or working out in the off-season, Emma was always setting an example for her teammates for what they should do if they wanted to rise to the next level.

“Emma, of course, did make it to the next level, and the next, and the level after that. As she has been selected to play and be a captain on state, regional, and even national teams. These accomplishments are impressive it’s true, however what is most impressive is that she did not leave her teammates in the dust. She continually encouraged her teammates to train so that she is no longer alone on the state team but joined by five of her teammates.”

Among those teams her coach is referring to, Emma played for the Wisconsin High School All-Stars in 2014-2017 and captained them from 2015-17, and she was picked for the Midwest Thunderbirds from 2015-17, captaining them last year. She was also selected to play for the U.S. Girl’s High School All-American 15s team where she helped her team defeat Quebec on two occasions.

Emma graduated from Fondy High School in Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, where she was an active volunteer with many organizations including the American Red Cross, the Fond du Lac Rugby League, and Walters Elementary School. She has also maintained a part time job at a local restaurant since she was 15 years old.

“Emma’s exceptional achievements and involvements in school show her scholarly side. She is also one of the most decent, honest, and trustworthy individuals that I have had the privilege of instructing,” said Fond de Lac High School teacher, Joseph Fenrick.

She is continuing her academic and athletic career at Lindenwood University in St. Charles, Missouri. She is eager to refine her skills with the Lindenwood University Women’s Rugby team and dreams of playing for the U.S.A. Olympic Team or in a Rugby World Cup. Initially hesitant about attending college, Emma is now confident in her future and enthusiastic about what is to come. She intends on pursuing a career in environmental impact.

“Emma is a leader by example,” said Billy Nicholas, her coach at Lindenwood University. “She works very hard and is a humble team player. She is a true student-athlete and focuses on her growth as a player and person on and off the field. She would be a great selection for this prestigious award.”
Congratulations Emma, on being named a 2017 Kevin Higgins College Scholarship recipient.

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