EDINBURG – Laura Van Tilburg is hitting the books hard at UTRGV. The junior forward recently earned her bachelor’s degree in kinesiology.
"Knowing that I have a strong academic background is something that is going to set the foundation for my future career,” said Van Tilburg.
The Weslaco native carries a 3.97 GPA and wants to pursue a career in physical therapy.
"It's like a puzzle,” Van Tilburg said. “You see a person come in one way and you have to formulate an exercise sheet and all these kind of different things to help them leave a completely different person."
It’s an experience she can relate to. Van Tilburg suffered a major knee injury in high school and a broken ankle at UTRGV.
“I Had to go to physical therapy, so it's something that really opened my eyes. My physical therapist got to be my mentor. And it's something that I really, really like,” said Van Tilburg.
"I think that's fantastic,” said UTRGV women’s basketball coach Larry Tidwell. “She comes in with a purpose. She's graduated in three years. But the thing is she also brings in on the court. In her sophomore year played with a broken foot."
Van Tilburg is currently taking summer courses in hopes of completing a master’s in kinesiology by the time her playing career is over at UTRGV.