Charlotte Chipembere walked onto Westmont’s campus with high expectations and hopes. Originally from Westlake, California, she is a political science major and number 00 on the soccer field. She plays as a goalkeeper for the women’s soccer team, but also has a busy school schedule.
“A normal day for me starts with … waking up as late as I can get away with while still making it to class on time.”
Chipembere has a heavy class load as she balances GEs and major classes, like Old Testament and Empirical Political Research. On the bright side, her classes are mostly on Zoom, so she has more time to get food, socialize, and, afterwards, get back on her usual grind.
To further her interest in political science, Chipembere spends a lot of her time catching up on Twitter and the news. Chipembere expressed that she always wants to be up-to-date on the ups and downs of the country and the world.
“My empirical political research class is definitely the hardest for me, but it is also my favorite, because as I am doing my own research I am learning that there are so many factors/angles in every news story or controversy. It helps me dissect what I am reading and figure out what really happened and what is just uncorrelated fabrication.”
“I might sneak in a nap if I’m lucky before practice so I’m ready to give it my all.”
Her position on the team is a little different from the rest of her teammates, since she is a keeper. Chipembere spends most of practice by herself, while her teammates run drills. She is always excited to come together as a team to do some form of scrimmaging or shooting.
“Keeper training is a lot of footwork, jumping and very technical drills to train for all kinds of situations. Scrimmages are super intense because we love playing each other so much, we really challenge each other to get better in our practices, but we do it in a way that is still fun!”
Chipembere has shown her creativity and resilience during this COVID-19 season, after her freshman season was cut short and now as the team is unsure about how their next season will play out.
“Our coach reminds us to leave everything on the field because we never know what is going to happen. Our spring season got cut short and we were all working out at home, which was really challenging for me because I can’t go out and shoot or dribble.”
However, she was able to find ways to shoot with her siblings at home during quarantine and has been making every minute on the field count.
At the end of the day, Chipembere spends her time listening to music by her favorite artists, which include Ariana Grande, Mac Miller, and John Meter, and looking through posts by her favorite celebrities on Instagram.
“If I didn’t get enough cardio at practice — as a keeper, [it] tends to happen more than you would think — I will go for a run and blast these artists in my headphones.”
Even in her downtime, Chipembere is truly dedicated to her sport and has integrated it into her daily life. She’s made soccer more than a sport — using it as a form of self-care to keep her mentally and physically healthy.