Name: Jared H. Rivers
Hometown: Skowhegan, Maine
Years attended UMF: 1998-2001
Current Location: South Portland, Maine
Current Job: Senior Associate Dean and Director of Diversity Enrollment in the Bates College Admission Office
Why did you choose to attend UMF?
When I transferred from the University of Maine in Orono to Husson College, I lost half of the credits I earned, which prompted my initial interest in transferring back to the UMaine system to get my credits back. The fact that Coach Dick Meader recruited me out of high school and was known in central Maine as a bit of a basketball legend, and was someone I knew from attending the Pine Tree basketball camps as a youth, provided familiarity and a certain level of comfort that attracted me to UMF. Plus, Farmington was just down the road from my hometown of Skowhegan, so the timing was right, the location was right, and altogether it was the perfect fit with regard to athletics and my academic preparation.
What are your greatest memories at UMF?
My greatest memories at UMF were all of the men's basketball practices over the course of two seasons. We put in so much hard work to get better and gel as a team, while proving to ourselves that we could compete with any team regardless of the opponent. It all happened so fast and of course I will always remember the big games (Five-overtime game with UMaine-Machias and beating Saint Joe's at their place in their brand new gymnasium as well as losing in the championship game to my old team, Husson), but it was the practices that I remember the most and cherish the most. I truly miss those moments.
How has the University of Maine at Farmington helped you in your life after college?
The University of Maine at Farmington had such a tremendous impact on my life and career after college. In fact, the UMF Admission Office saw talents in me that I didn't even know I had. They asked me to do an internship, which lasted about two months and before it was over they were encouraging me to apply for the opening in their office to be an Admission Counselor. Fortunately for me, I was hired and they immediately sent me to essentially rookie camp for Admission Counselors and people like Sharon Oliver, Laurie Fryberg, Tony McGlaughlin and Wendy Alt, really took me under their wing and provided intense personal and professional training that ultimately led to my 14-year career in the field of admissions. I have worked for some of the best schools in the country including UMF, Cornell University, Brandeis University and now Bates College. I have been promoted four times in my career and currently third in command in the Bates Admission Office. All of my accomplishments were made possible through the University of Maine at Farmington.
What advice would you give to our current team/student-athletes?
Make the most of your time at UMF while you can. Push yourself beyond what you think your own personal limits are both athletically and academically. Believe me, you can push yourself much harder than what you currently think. I have not even seen your practice yet, but I can almost guarantee some of you look like you're practicing in slow motion. Get after it, already! Don't make excuses for yourselves. When you fail, own it and then do whatever you have to do to fix the problem...and here's a hint, it usually starts with the man in the mirror. If you only do those things, I guarantee UMF will change your life for the better and you'll always remember it. And then thank Coach Meader!
Note: Rivers was inducted into the UMF Athletics Hall of Fame in 2014. Click here to see his Hall of Fame tribute video.