THE NEXT RIDE: Kate Eagleton
With the 2018-19 season officially complete, it is time for Carolina to bid farewell to eight seniors, all of whom impacted the Gamecocks’ program in their own way. The end of their collegiate careers marks the beginning of a new journey, filled with countless opportunities. The Next Ride features will spotlight the seniors and their time at South Carolina. Forever to Thee.
Next up: Kate Eagleton. Eagleton came to Carolina from Miami, Fla. She was a four-year member of the Gamecocks, seeing riding time throughout those four years.
Graduation Date, Degree, Major(s):
Graduated December 2018, walked and celebrated graduation on May 11, 2019; BA in visual communications; pursuing a master’s in mass communication
What was your hardest class at Carolina?
Visual Communications Capstone portfolio class
How did you pick your major?
I changed my major four times during my freshman and sophomore years. I knew I loved design and visual branding and realized that a visual communications degree would allow me to pursue all my passions. As a vis com major, I was able to strengthen and develop my graphic design, photography, videography and web development skills, making me a well-rounded designer.
How did the Carolina Equestrian family help you during your academic career?
Having our own team academic advisor, Bridgett Tabor, was a lifesaver. BT is amazing. Just knowing I had someone I could text or call anytime with questions about my classes or planning my schedule was so helpful. Getting in touch with your college’s academic advisor is difficult since they serve a huge student population. Having someone like Bridgett available was key to helping me succeed and making sure I had the right credits to graduate.
How did the Carolina Equestrian family help with your post-college career?
I started my master’s degree while I was still a member of the equestrian team and everyone was very supportive and accommodating of that. Our coaches understood that a graduate program is extremely rigorous and wanted me to succeed in that above all else.
What competition will you remember most from your time as a Carolina Equestrian student-athlete?
My favorite competition was hosting the SEC Championship here at Carolina. Running the competition required collaboration from our whole team and it was awesome to see everyone come together and help out – even our parents. It’s an honor to be part of such a competitive conference like the SEC and to host the top teams at our home was a special feeling.
What’s the one phrase you’ll remember most from Coach Major/Terebesi/Sorrel?
Coach T’s approach to connecting with and understanding the horses on a higher level is something that will stick with me. She encouraged me to look at the horses as a whole when trying to understand them and think of the “why” behind a horse’s behavior. Her emphasis on horsemanship and horse care definitely made a lasting impression.
What do you plan on doing after graduation?
I am currently earning my master’s degree in mass communication at the University of South Carolina. I am also working at the Center for Teaching Excellence on campus as a social media manager.
What’s your advice for young riders interested in joining the Carolina Equestrian program?
It’s crucial that you love the university itself first. It’s important that the school offers the right academic programs for your interests and the campus culture aligns with what you’re looking for. Your university experience is so much more than just being a student-athlete, so it’s important that the university is a right fit for you, too. Most importantly, be persistent. Coaches are flooded with emails from interested riders, so don’t get discouraged if you don’t hear back right away and make sure you get yourself heard.