Caleb Gatchell is a junior from Red Lion, Pennsylvania, majoring in accounting and mathematics. He runs on Hillsdale’s track and field and cross-country teams.
What’s been your favorite part about running track at Hillsdale?
Definitely the friends I’ve been able to make on the team. When you’re a distance runner you log a lot of miles with your training partners on the back roads, and we’ve become pretty close as a result.
What made you choose to attend Hillsdale?
Definitely the academics. I loved that I was surrounded by students who actually engaged with the material and tried to learn from it and apply it to their daily lives, instead of sitting back and ingesting material merely to regurgitate it back onto a test. I came here to be a student, and it’s been a blessing to be able to run track as well.
How has your involvement in athletics impacted your academics?
It’s forced me to learn how to manage my time. I don’t have time that could be spent on homework or could be spent doing something fun. I know that from 7:00 to 11:00 each night I have to be doing homework, and then I need to be in bed, or else I won’t be able to perform at the level I need to be able to.
What are some of your athletic ambitions going into next year?
I think it’s been 16 years since we’ve had a men’s cross-country team qualify for nationals. Next year will be my senior year, and I’d really love to be a part of the class that gets us back there.
What initially drew you to run track? How long have you been running?
I’ve always loved to run, but until my junior year of high school I was chasing a ball. I switched from soccer to cross-country and track that year though, and I haven’t looked back since. As much as I still love soccer, I can’t say I made the wrong decision. I can honestly say I love running and look forward to practice almost every day, and God has blessed me with a fair amount of success.
Do you have any plans following your graduation next year?
I have an internship this summer that I’m hoping will translate into a job offer, and then I’ll also be working on passing the CPA exam.
What are some of your interests outside of athletics and academics?
I love fishing and woodworking— scroll sawing to be specific.
In what moment were you most proud to be a part of Hillsdale’s track team?
Probably after our DMR finished sixth at indoor nationals this past season. We had a freshman, a sophomore, a junior, and a senior on that relay so I think it spoke to how far the upperclassmen have come since our freshman year when we were barely top-six at GLIACs, and to the direction the program is headed.