Alisha Burch ’21

Scoring Home Runs in Academics and Softball

Alisha Burch is all too familiar with learning in a small school setting. Attending high school with a population that was lucky to exceed 400 students, Alisha dreamed of life outside of Coatesville, Indiana. Her ticket out? Softball.

Throughout her childhood, she fantasized about becoming a D-1 softball player and attending a large university. But as she got older, Alisha realized she needed to cover more bases in college than those on the field.

“When I finally got to the point of deciding where I wanted to go, I ended up finding I still wanted to play softball, but I wanted to definitely put my academics first.” – Burch

Alisha BurchCaught between her love for softball and her desire for a strong academic foundation, Alisha found the school that united the two – Franklin College.

“Franklin really allows me to prioritize my education. The coaches are so understanding with putting academics first because they know we’re here to get a job afterwards.” – Burch

Fast forward four years: Alisha, was a member of the Franklin College softball team, graduated with a bachelor’s degree in exercise science. In the meantime, she has already started on her master’s degree in athletic training, a degree she will also earn from Franklin.

Though juggling her undergrad and grad work and softball has its challenges, Alisha credits her confidence to persevere to the supportive Franklin College community.

“At Franklin, the faculty sees you as a person. While I feel like if I went to a bigger school, they would just see me as a number. While at Franklin, the professors a think, ‘You’re in my class, I’m making sure that you are actually getting something out of this to be able to use it later in life.’” – Burch

Alisha may not have escaped the small school environment as planned. But she discovered why the college’s size is its biggest asset. Franklin’s cozy community allows all of its members — students, professors and staff members — to form close bonds with one another. Those bonds allow students to squeeze the most out of their education. Because if the professors know you, they know how to help you become the best you can be — even on the tough days.

“The professors could just tell that I was off in class, and they would just afterwards kind of pull me off and or email me and say, ‘Hey, you know, I noticed you just weren’t yourself today, are you okay? And do we need to talk?’ So, what I would definitely say that many people are going to get out of Franklin College more than really any other institute would be that close-knit family. Everybody’s there for you, no matter what you may need.” – Burch