Atlanta United players tackle earning their degrees during season shutdown

Atlanta United players tackle earning their degrees during season shutdown
Atlanta United players like Mo Adams are taking advantage of the season's pause to go back to school. (Mo Adams)

Since Atlanta United’s season has been put on hold, several players are taking advantage of this extra downtime by going back to school.

Channel 2′s Alison Mastrangelo spoke with George Campbell and Mo Adams this week. Both started taking online classes at the same time in March right before the coronavirus pandemic hit.

Now as their team slowly starts to ramp up training, they’re learning to balance school and workouts.

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“I made a promise to myself and my family that I was going to get my degree no matter how well soccer went to complete the whole college experience,” Adams said. “It was to get a degree and be a pro athlete.”

The Atlanta United midfielder spent three semesters at Syracuse University but took about a two-year break to pursue his professional soccer career.

Since Major League Soccer has a partnership with Southern New Hampshire University, Adams decided to go back to school online.

“The beauty of it is you’re in charge of it. You can take as much as you can handle take as much as you kind of need in the moment,” he said.

Adams has completed one class since March and he’s already started taking two more. His goal is to hopefully finish school in about a year and a half.

“The major I’m doing is business and administration with a focus on sport and I want to be in the sports industry once I finish playing,” he said.

His teammate Campbell signed a homegrown contract straight out of high school last year. The Atlanta native recently just completed his first college course.

While Campbell is off to a strong start in his college career, he’s still trying to figure out what to major in.

“I know as a high school student I started to become a better writer,” he said. “I like Spanish and anatomy, too.”

Both players told Mastrangelo the key to their success is good time management. During the day they focus on their virtual meetings, individual workouts, and in the evenings they study.

“With so much free time and be able to get your head down, you actually get better and improve, especially during this time. I’m just trying to use my time to get better every day,” Adams said.

Adams also said once the season gets started that he will scale back to just one class. Once he completes his undergraduate degree, he would like to pursue his master’s in broadcast journalism.