Student-Athlete of the Week

Aug. 31, 2011

Laramie, Wyo. -

Athlete of the Week

Tamara Kitic

What was the biggest transition for you when you came to play volleyball in the states?
The biggest transition for me when I came to the US was language. I remember that I had a hard time remembering "front row" and "back row" which were some of the terms that we used on the court daily.

What made you interested in the sport and when did you start playing?
Since my parents were both playing the sport, everybody expected from me to play some sport in the future. At the age of three, my dad brought me with him on the mountain where he and the rest of his teammates had preseason going on for 10 days. =) I started playing volleyball when I was 10 years old. I remember that I was stubborn and I didn't want to play any other sport except volleyball.

What has been the strangest experience you have had since coming to the US?
The strangest experience . . . well, I think that I've had a hard time understanding people that are able to go in their pajamas to the store, or to be more specific: Wal-Mart. Europe is way different when comes to clothes.

Is there any food you miss from back home that you haven't been able to eat lately?
Serbians make a big deal when it comes to food. I miss everything that my mom cooks, since she is that good when it comes to cooking. I'm not a fan of fast food, so I have hard time finding something here that I really like and that is not Italian.

How do you mentally prepare yourself for matches?
I usually try to Skype my dad before every tournament, since I miss our "talks" before and after games, or I play some good music really loud on my iPod and try to set my mind for game day.

What have you enjoyed the most since you have been in Laramie?
I like the people in Laramie a lot. I love my teammates and my friends. I love summer in Laramie since it is the best place to be during summer.

Who is your favorite professor at UW? Why?
My favorite professor at UW is Sasha Skiba who teaches economics. There are a couple reasons why he is my favorite so far. First of all, he is Ukrainian and has incredible sense for humor. Second, I think that he had the most understanding for me as a student-athlete. I remember once we met at 6:45 a.m. just to work on problems that I missed while I was on the road, having a conference game.

What is your favorite/least favorite practice drill?
My favorite practice drill is competitive cross court hitting, and I don't know if I have least favorite one. I know that I don't like warming up. It is way boring for me.

What is your favorite movie?
I have a couple favorite movies, maybe one in every genre. I like: Green Mile, Barber of Siberia, The Notebook, Transformers, and Fast and Furious.

If you could remove or add one rule to the game of volleyball, what would it be?
I would like to add "screaming" at line referees since they are always blind and don't see if ball is in or out, without getting yellow card. I think that I would like to add fourth contact too and remove ten foot line, so that I can easily hit the ball from the back row.

If you could bring one thing from back home to Laramie, what would it be?
I would like to bring my family. I hate being far away from them.

Do you have a dream vacation?
I think that going to Dubai would be my dream vacation.

What are your plans after college?
I would love to do my Masters in International Business and after that, work for some of the European companies in Europe. (Switzerland)

How do you deal with being so far from home?
I try to keep my friends close to me, so that I can push that loneliness far away and I try to stay busy all the time.

Has your family ever been to Laramie to visit?
My family has never been to the States, but I'm looking forward to bringing them here for my graduation.