Matt Jorgensen is hiking his way to accomplishment, regardless of the challenges he has faced along the way. Besides being a senior biology major here at Geneseo—which is an accomplishment in and of itself—he excels at cross country and track. Despite these achievements, Jorgensen has battled both injury and the personal toll of overwhelming thoughts regarding his future after graduation. Jorgenson, however, defies the odds, persisting and achieving exemplary grades along with his fortitude on the field.
Jorgensen decided he wanted to become a Geneseo Knight after his first visit here, where he fell in love with the track program and the overall atmosphere surrounding the sport. “It just felt like a really good fit,” he said.
The sports at Geneseo that caught his attention were cross country and track. This was not his first encounter with this passion: like many athletes, Jorgensen has a long background in his sport.
Picture a young Jorgensen, bright eyed and bushy-tailed—not yet beaten down with midterms and finals—ready to start seventh grade. As with most middle school aged boys, Jorgensen was just looking to find himself. He was able to achieve this through his love of track and cross country after he saw his older sister get into the sport. Prior to his love of running, Jorgensen played hockey.
Although Jorgensen does not yet hold any varsity records here at Geneseo, he has his own personal records that he strives to beat everyday. His best 5K time is 15:19.34. His long-term goals, however, are to help his team make nationals and win. Beyond that, he hopes to achieve his dream and go All-American.
His favorite memory with the team is when the people who don’t make nationals get together and form the coveted T-Team, which stands for transition team. This band of athletes who didn’t make the top seven spots come together and go crazy supporting their teammates through the T-Team. And yes, they are somehow louder than your mom yelling on the sidelines.
When Jorgensen isn’t running, though, he can be found studying in the hopes of getting into physician’s assistant school or spending time outdoors. He has been camping and hiking for years and plans to continue that in his future by participating regularly in outdoor activities with both his friends and family.
Jorgensen would also like to eventually run a marathon—just for the sake of running. His wish goes back to a part of his overall goal: to run for as long as he can for as long as he is able to. Jorgensen is able to find a sheer joy in running, one that is unparalleled by most.
Although Jorgensen suffered a career-threatening injury, he has managed to still accomplish a lot. In his freshman season, Jorgensen had a series of stress fractures. As a result, he wasn’t able to run until his junior season. He was bound to light training to keep his fitness up. His teammates gave him the support he needed to get through this bump on the road, and he will never forget it.
Although the temptation to quit was there, Jorgensen persevered. “[I] knew I had more in me,” he said. “I just knew I wasn’t done.”