Big East announces transition program

By: Isabel Smith ~Staff Writer~

Newswire photo by Adam Spegele | Marquia Turner (above) will travel to New York for the Big East Conference’s Transition Game with teammate Imani Partlow.

Redshirt sophomore Imani Partlow and junior Marquia Turner of the women’s basketball team are heading to New York City for the Big East Conference’s Inaugural Transition Game program on Sept. 17 and 18.

The program is organized to offer insights and inspiration to help current women’s basketball student-athletes make the transition from the court to the real world.

The two-day program offers opportunities to learn from some of the best. The players will attend sessions with panels of former Big East players, talent from the media and leaders of programs in both the collegiate and WNBA levels.

“This is a great opportunity for our two players attending Transition Game,” assistant coach Mark Ehlen said. “This is the first year the Big East has presented this, and it’s designed to help athletes make that transition from collegiate athletics to the professional world. They’ll be exposed to some amazing speakers, and I know they’re looking forward to it.”

Partlow and Turner will attend the sessions with approximately 30 other players from roughly 10 other teams.

The women will learn about playing beyond college from the WNBA Chief of Basketball Operations & Player Relations Renee Brown and Olympic gold medalist and former WNBA talent Teresa Weatherspoon.

DeNita Turner, President and CEO of Image Builders, Inc., will discuss with the players how to create a positive personal brand and image when they transition out of college.

Several media personalities will be on a panel about how to present themselves in front of the camera. The panel members include reporter and analyst Doris Burke, Fox Sports reporter Sarah Kustok and analyst Julianne Viani.

The women will learn about other careers in basketball as well. Another panel consists of NCAA and WNBA referee Tiara Cruise, New York Liberty associate head coach Katie Smith and the Executive Vice President of Global Marketing Partnerships for the NBA, Emilio Collins.

In addition to attending panels, the players will participate in mock interviews with professionals in the sports industry.

The student-athletes will also explore New York with a trip to the National September 11 Memorial and Museum.

“I’m looking forward to learning more about people that have been through these transitions and about how they handled each situation,” Partlow said “This will help me off the court by acting as a team player, learning how to make sacrifices and always have faith in myself while never backing down from different obstacles that are thrown at me.”