Chris Lyons ’17
Men’s track and field
Point Pleasant, N.J.
Residence: Williams Hall
How did you get into throwing?
I started shot put freshman year of high school. Originally, I was a runner. I tried to do longer sprints, the 200m and the 400m, but my coach thought my size would be best for throwing, so I transitioned and, at first, I was really, really bad at it. Freshman year was not a good year for me, but eventually I got the hang of it and, by my senior year, I had gotten to my state meet and done pretty well there. The weight throw is hard because it’s heavy (35 lbs.). It’s hard to get it moving. But, eventually, with a lot of training and practice, you get used to it. And then the hammer is very similar to the weight, but it has a long wire with a ball attached to the top and you spin it around your head. That’s a little easier to move and that’s probably my favorite event of the three.
What are some of your favorite experiences on the team here?
I think just the coming together of the team this year has been really fun. We have a new head coach this year, Ethan Barron. He’s from Tufts. In the past few years, the team dynamic has been good but has been fractured at times, and I think that Ethan has done a really good job, along with the captains, of integrating everyone together: the sprinters, the jumpers, the hurdlers. Everyone is coming together this year.
How’s the JA experience been?
It’s been good. I was nervous at first, because I know that people put a lot of responsibility on JAs. But I’ve been loving it so far. I have a great entry and a great co. The dynamic has been great and I’ve had a great time with it.
How would you compare the experience of being a captain with that of being a JA?
I think that there are a lot of similarities. I think that you’re responsible for a lot of people and take accountability for a lot of people in different areas. I think that they’re different because as a captain it can be harder to be closer with everyone. With an entry, you are exposed to people everyday, but, as a captain, I only see the throwers every day and then tangentially I’m connected with the sprinters, but I never really get to see some of the distance. With an entry, I think you have that set group, you see the same group everyday. As a captain, ideally I am close with everyone, all 100 members of the team. I think the scope of being a captain is a lot bigger because there are so many people to interact with.
What are some of your academic interests here?
I am a psychology major, a neuroscience concentrator and I am pre-med, so the goal is to get to med school.
What’re your other interests here at Williams besides throwing and being a JA?
I’m part of the Mental Health Committee, which is probably one of my favorite activities that I do here. I’m a big advocate for mental health and I think that it is a great group of people. We meet every Thursday, and we discuss how we can better fit the community and how we can help [Psychological Counseling Services], and that’s been one of my favorite experiences here.
What has been your favorite winter study class so far during your time here?
Last year I did medical shadowing, so I got to shadow a doctor for four weeks. I shadowed an oncologist over at the Berkshire Medical Center in Pittsfield. His name is Dr. [Trevor] Bayliss. He was a really nice guy, an alum who graduated a handful of years ago, and he told me a lot about his story and how he got to medical school. I think that was a big reason for me to commit more fully to the idea of going to med school.