IWU Nursing Spring 2014: Volume 7 Issue 1 - Page 9

A Few Good Men Left: The Grant County Jackalopes Rugby Football Club plays against ISU. Catch the team in action at a home match at Matter Park in Marion, Indiana. Photo by Gannon Burgett. Below: Nursing students Joel Anderson, Nathan Sayegh, and Adam Burggraf (pictured left to right) are also rugby teammates. Photos by Jer Nelsen. written by Joel Anderson In the fall of 2010, a group of young men from Indiana Wesleyan began to toss around the idea of starting a rugby league at the school. With a desire for sport and camaraderie, Erik Johnson, Nathan Sayegh, Jake Gonzales, and Zac Murphy founded the Grant County Jackalopes Rugby Football Club. Although not officially affiliated with the school, the team is comprised solely of IWU students. Through word of mouth, recruiting, and faith, the numbers quickly grew to a full team of fifteen players, and the Jackalopes were able to play in their first match the following spring. A character-building, faith-centered atmosphere of brotherhood was cultivated through the club. In an effort to minister to opponents, the team makes a habit of praying with the other team after every game, and not once has the opposing team refused the invitation to join. The team has upheld IWU’s code of conduct for their players through accountability within the club. Now, with several seasons under its belt, the club is attracting international recruits and an effusive fan base and in 2012 inspired the founding of a Lady Jackalopes women’s team. Through the life of the club, there have been multiple players from the School of Nursing out on the pitch, as the rugby field is called—namely, current students Adam Burggraf, Nathan Sayegh, and Joel Anderson and graduate Rob Marvin, BSN. All of these men learned that they could take the leadership skills that they learned in class and clinicals onto the field, an act which pushed some of them towards leadership within the team. Team cofounder Sayegh was a devoted coach to the Jackalopes for three years and in the 2012-13 season, Anderson was appointed by the coaches to be the on-field captain. And for these nursing students, leadership and service have not been reserved strictly to the pitch. Off the field, Sayegh has been the diversity coordinator for Scripture Hall for two years. Burggraf has also been in leadership in Scripture Hall, serving as a resident assistant as early as his sophomore year at IWU. Burggraf’s leadership experience extends beyond IWU, as well—he also served in the United States Army for nearly ten years, with two deployments in that time. Indiana Wesleyan University’s School of Nursing has always been one to strive for excellence in developing and training leaders. The Jackalopes Rugby Football Club is another outlet for that growth, and these three students are just a few examples of the many outstanding leaders that the School of Nursing has cultivated since its first graduating class back in 1975. + facebook.com/IWUSofN 9