Josh Nichols: Exemplifying the Leaders and Best

Her Campus had the pleasure of conversing with Josh Nichols; a Junior and first-year member of the Michigan Cheer Team. Josh is a triple major in International Studies, Neuroscience, and Spanish, with a minor in history, which he plans to accomplish all in four years. If you can’t tell that he is a driven, ambitious, and outgoing individual, let his latest undertaking as a division one athlete attest to that.

HC: What what your life like as a Michigan student prior to being a cheerleader?

JN: I live on campus in an apartment, but come from Belleville MI, which is only 20 minutes away. Being involved on campus has always been important to me. Last semester I was in a musical with a group called MUSKET, which was a fun way to let loose. I have been apart of Men’s glee club and have found great friendship and experiences through that community of people. As a sophomore, I became an orientation day leader and was a campus day leader for two years. I am in a pre law fraternity, Kappa Alpha Pi, and a social christian fraternity. I work at the law library, Foundry reception, and MDen. I also am a student ambassador.

HC: What led you to join the cheer team?

JN: I saw the team my freshman year during Festifall and thought that it would be a fun and great opportunity to stay active. I also thought that even though I had no experience per se, I could work to get the skills I saw the team doing. So, I tried out my freshmen year and didn’t make it. But that summer I went to open gyms, took some tumbling classes, and tried out again fall of 2018 and made the team! I honestly was so happy.

HC: Describe your first game day experience?

JN: My first game day was long and hot but really exciting. I didn't realize it would be as long as it was, and I had never been in The Big House in that was before, so it was a lot to take in. But there was overall lots of support; it was intimidating but it was good.

HC: What’s your favorite part of being on the cheer team?

JN: I really love the team dynamic we have. There isn't anyone I don’t like – we all get along really well. There is a great focus on each other and not on trying to be individuals, which makes us successful.

HC: What is your schedule like?

JN: Our schedule is rough but manageable. We practice four, sometimes five, days a week and lift twice a week. Our coach gives us forewarning about events and practices, so it’s easy to schedule around them. I love waking up early for lift or other cheer things because it gives me a jump start to my day!

HC: How has cheerleading affected your academic routines and outside involvements?

JN: I did have to drop Men’s glee club, but I hope to incorporate that back into my schedule very soon. The only thing that cheer has really changed for me is making me more responsible with my time. I stay busy with class, cheer, and other activities, but because this is my main priority behind school, I have to be responsible for allocating my time to other things more than I ever have before. I feel like my time management skills have gone through the roof!

HC:  What are some personal goals you have regarding the team?

JN: I want to enjoy cheer everyday. Sometimes practice can get clouded with negative energy and that creates tension, something we all struggle with, but if we go in with the mindset “off today, but we will be on tomorrow,” we can overcome the time that difficult by moving forward. I think there is strength in this cohesiveness.

HC: What is a challenge of being on such a large team?

JN: I think the greatest challenge is that it’s hard to get to know every member individually. We’re all super busy, so it’s easy to make friends and stick to them, which is great, but I wish I could get to know each member on a better level.

HC: How has cheer changed your life?

JN: Cheer has definitely made me more outgoing. I already felt like a big extrovert but smiling and waving at thousands of people has really helped me come out of my shell even more. I have made such great friends with people I probably would’ve never met otherwise; I’m so thankful for that.

There's definitely lots of fun to be had as a Michigan cheerleader and Josh makes the commitment truly rewarding. By the nature of his responses, if you are looking for a great group of people and an active way to get involved it’s a great place to start!