Standing Tall

Diminutive soccer star excels on field and in classroom

Sarah Zuzulock didn’t find it easy to play in every single Rutgers–Camden soccer game for four seasons and simultaneously earn grades that made her a regular fixture on the Rutgers School of Nursing–Camden dean’s list. “Some days you have to get up early, and some days you stay up late,” Zuzulock said. “I did a lot of studying on the bus to away games.”

Zuzulock, who stands 5 feet, 1 inch, sometimes found her stature to be a disadvantage on the soccer pitch. “I’m very short,” she said. “That’s worked against me in some cases, but I’m a fighter.”

Zuzulock’s talent, effort, and fighting spirit earned her awards for her play and her efforts in the classroom, culminating in her final semester by being named Rutgers–Camden’s Woman of the Year by the New Jersey Association of Intercollegiate Athletics for Women. A four-year standout, she played in all 69 Scarlet Raptor soccer games from 2016– 2019, starting all but two of those games. She finished her career tied for 16th in games played and 13th in assists. During her junior season in 2018, Zuzulock earned recognition as the team’s Most Valuable Player while helping Rutgers–Camden qualify for both the Eastern College Athletic Conference (ECAC) and New Jersey Athletic Conference (NJAC) playoffs for the first time since 2007. “We all had tears of joy,” she said. “It was something our program hadn’t done in a very long time.”

A two-time team captain, Zuzulock posted classroom accomplishments that were equally impressive. She has earned a pair of NJAC Academic Honorable Mention awards and is expected to add more NJAC academic honors in June when the conference cites its top student-athletes for 2019–20. “I hold myself accountable,” she said. “I don’t like to fail.”

Zuzulock grew up in National Park, New Jersey, and attended Gateway Regional High School in Woodbury Heights. Her older sister, Kaitlyn, who also played soccer at Rutgers–Camden, earned a nursing degree in 2019.

In January, Zuzulock began working as a nursing associate for two 12-hour days a week on the pediatric intensive care unit at Cooper University Hospital. After graduating, she plans to take the nursing exam to acquire her license and work as a nurse, a career choice motivated by her desire to care for others.“I like to help people,” Zuzulock said. “It’s nice to be able to help people in need.”

Posted in: 2020 Spring, On Campus

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