Ever wonder how your favorite high school athletes are doing after they graduate? Are they playing sports at the next level? How are they performing? One of the problems with high school sports is that people DON’T follow the very players that may have brought them to the game in the first place. Most of them are easily forgotten.
In a series of future articles, we will be looking at these athletes that starred in the Cleveland area over the past few years. How are their careers doing playing at the next level? What made them so sought after by colleges, and what are their future plans?
The first piece in this series isn’t about a star athlete. It isn’t about gathering stats on their college career, and it isn’t about how highly recruited they were as a player. It’s about someone who had their dreams of playing high school sports come crashing down on them, but who managed to make the best of it, and is thriving in his new position.
Josh Jarosz of St. Ignatius
Josh is currently a senior at St. Ignatius High School. He doesn’t play sports, and isn’t being recruited as a player. What he IS doing is taking advantage of the education he is getting at St. Ignatius, and the options he has available to him there to turn him into the most well rounded person he can be.
The story of Josh Jarosz starts in his freshman year at St. Ignatius. Josh had always been a football player, and dreamed of playing for the Wildcats. Unfortunately, a knee injury suffered in preseason practice left him out for the year. They say that when you are “making men” you have to lead by example. Did St. Ignatius ever do that. In proving that they are more than just a football powerhouse, the Wildcat coaching staff offered Josh a position as an Assistant Trainer. They say the rest is history, but the real story is in the details of that history.
He gets lots of support from the Ignatius community from everyone — teachers and staff, the other boys, and even the parents. He is part of the team and the players treat him as one of them….Tina Jarosz
What is Josh Jarosz up to now?
Josh is starting his fourth year as an Assistant Trainer for the Wildcats, the only Trainer to be there all four years. However, that isn’t all he has been up to. In a schedule that might make a multi-tasker crazy, Josh has taken on quite a bit in the last four years since we last checked in, especially in the area of community service. Here is what Josh has gotten himself involved in:
- He is currently in his second year on the Wildcat Bowling team
- A Student manager on the Lacrosse team
- Served two weeks in the Dominican Republic on a service mission
- Leader of the St. Joseph of Arimathea Pallbearers, where he serves as a pallbearer for all worshipers, including indigent and homeless people for their funeral
- Leader of the Labre Ministry, which involves feeding the homeless every week
- Friends with L’Arche where he eats dinner once a month with disabled adults
- Leader of Support the Troops
- Member of the Gonzaga Society, where he prays for the sick every week
- For both his school church (St. Mary’s at St. Ignatius), and his local church (St. Patrick in Westpark) he serves as a lecturn, altar boy, and Eucharistic Minister
Josh likes helping other people and being involved in organizations where he can help them and make a difference in their lives and make them smile. This involves him feeding the homeless in the Greater Cleveland areas well as sharing meals with mentally disabled adults. He learned this compassion and opportunity of involvement through going to school at St. Ignatius and through his favorite teacher — Mr. Jim Skerl, who started these organizations many years ago and he recently just passed away….Tina Jarosz
One might wonder if Josh may be spreading himself too thin with all the service and activities he has. He isn’t. He is still getting all A’s and B’s in school, and is doing it with not the easiest of classes.
Nobody can tell Josh that he can’t do anything that he has set his mind to. Two years in a row his teacher and/or counselor suggested to him that he shouldn’t request a certain subject for the the honors or the AP course. Not because his grades weren’t good enough, but they wanted him to know the amount of work would be big. But he was determined to be in those classes and appealed to those teachers until they let him in. And he did very well in those classes because he pushes himself and likes the challenge….Tina Jarosz
What are Josh’s future plans?
With all that he has going on in his life, Josh still has time to fill out college applications, which he is in the process of. He is currently choosing between John Carroll University, the University of Toledo, and Gannon University. He plans to major in one of his two passions, Pre-Med or Athletic Training. Matter of fact, he has already been in touch with a coach (Coach Cochran) at John Carroll and the Head Athletic Trainer (Don McPhillips) regarding a position there if he decides on the Blue Streaks.
What does Josh think of the last four years?
My last four years at Ignatius not only challenged me but helped me in my studies, relationships, and service. I have made so many connections and relationships. Saint Ignatius helped me grow as a man and a son. I can say that this school is special and I believe that it was a gift from God to lead me to Saint Ignatius….Josh Jarosz
Admiration from fans for your accomplishments on the athletic fields and courts are great, but the real admiration should go to the personal growth and unselfishness acquired through the years of young adulthood
Josh Jarosz is a young man that deserves just as many accolades