A Graduation Story: Pizano Sticks Her Routine

    Gymnast Jennifer Pizano specialized in the uneven bars during her San Jose State career. Finishing strong always was paramount to a high-scoring routine to satisfy her and help the Spartans to victory.

    One meet, in particular, stood out for the communications major from Waterford, Calif., a community of 8,000 residents just east of Modesto.

    “...It was my second meet in my sophomore year and I went a 9.775 (score). It was a great meet,” she remembers about the 2007 meet in Spartan Gym against Boise State, Seattle Pacific and Utah State. “Wayne (Coach Wright) goes you can’t do better than 9.55. I said, Watch this, Wayne!' So, it was very fulfilling to have a great meet like that.”

    Pizano’s college career could be termed one great meet. She was among the thousands who participated in the University’s May 23 Commencement ceremony in Spartan Stadium.

    “Actually, I believe I’m the first one to graduate. My aunt went for a couple of years. We’ve come to the conclusion that I’m first,” states Pizano.

    “Being a college graduate means I have the opportunity to create my own road map, take the knowledge I’ve learned to help the world, help myself and help my family. It creates a lot of good opportunities.”

    She says her days as a student-athlete taught her about teamwork, dedication and getting work done. Pizano hopes to put her major to use. After the Commencement ceremony, she had her sights set on interviewing for communications positions with local aerospace engineering companies.

    Long term, she’d like to keep a hand in college athletics. When gymnastics was over for her, she traded her leotard for a mascot’s outfit. Instead of being shoeless in competition, she dropped her feet with shoes on into the shoes of the San Jose State mascot Sammy Spartan for the 2008-09 year.

    “I got to cheer for all the teams and all the athletes even though I was not part of the competition. It was my way to give back to them,” Pizano says glowingly.

    Here’s a cheer for Jennifer Pizano, a student-athlete, scholar-athlete, school mascot and success story.

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