A Proud Senior on Her Way: Mary Ostman
April 23, 2011
By Kelsey Detweiler, GoPSUsports.com Student Staff Writer
"It's so long ago," laughed Ostman. "I guess when I came out here with my Dad I came out to visit and it was one of my first visits but I had seen a couple of other campuses and I really fell in love. Just the family atmosphere as far as athletic goes, how beautiful the campus is, how well-renowned Penn State is just for academics as well as athletics and I actually just loved it. I don't know - something just drew me here and I figured that this would become my home for the next few years."
Four years later, Ostman is now in her final semester as a Nittany Lion as well as her final season as a member of the Penn State Softball program. The 5-foot-7 senior said that looking back, she is happy with the decision that she made.
"I would say that I definitely made a good choice in coming here and I lived my four years to the fullest that I possibly could both on the field and off of the field," said Ostman. "With athletics, community service, in the classroom and just everything - I lived it up as much as a possibly could."
In her freshman and sophomore years at Penn State, Ostman was quickly introduced to the lifestyle of a collegiate student-athlete as she appeared in more than half of the team's regular season games both seasons. The Nittany Lions relied on Ostman's speed and agility as she was mainly a pinch runner and outfielder for the team.
As a junior, Ostman started 31 of Penn State's 44 scheduled games in right field or as a pinch runner while batting .247 with 20 hits, three doubles, six RBIs and a homerun. Her stability and consistency on the field that year propelled her into a starting position this season, as she has held down left field for the Nittany Lions in 2011.
With just two weeks left to go in her final semester at Penn State and 10 more regular season games to play, Ostman reflected on her time at University Park and said that she has learned a lot in her four years of college.
"I think probably a word of advice to girls going through the Penn State softball program is continue to work hard day in and day out," said Ostman. "You know obviously there will be bumps along the road but keep your chin up, play for yourself, for your teammates and whatever keeps you going and definitely enjoy it while you can."
Majoring in Hotel, Restaurant and Institutional Management, Ostman has truly embraced every opportunity that has been thrown at her in her academic career. Because of her strong work ethic and eagerness to succeed, the Penn State senior has already accepted a job offer with a well-known restaurant company. She said that her dedication to the softball team helped her chances of finding employment.
"I think Penn State did give me that extra edge and I've actually accepted a job with a restaurant company, Joseph Alexanders, and I think just being a student and being an athlete certainly helped me," said Ostman. "I know that a couple of recruiters definitely told me that they do look at student-athletes in particular just because they have what it takes to take it from the field and into the working environment. I think it definitely has prepared me."
Ostman encourages her fellow teammates and Nittany Lions to come to give all that they have to their schoolwork and athletic career while they have the time to do so. The senior said that because she gave Penn State all that she had to offer, she feels confident that she got her monies worth and is well prepared for the future.
"I'm definitely ready to start the next chapter of my life," said Ostman. "As much as I hate to let Penn State go, I think that it's time. I'm ready after four years."