This installment of our alumni feature focuses on Danielle DiFranco, a 2007 graduate and member of the Hornet softball team. Her 2007 team captured the program's first Old Dominion Athletic Conference (ODAC) title in 11 years and was the first of three-straight conference-title winners.
What is your best LC memory on the softball field?
Winning the ODAC championship with my teammates and earning our first trip to the NCAA tournament is something I will never forget. Sprinting off of the bus to ring the bell on campus the night we won ODACs was the culmination of four years of hard work (pictured below).
How did it feel to help take the LC softball program to that next level, winning an ODAC title and moving on to the NCAA Tournament?
The most overwhelming emotion was and still is pride. Even before my time, there were many softball players at LC who worked just as hard as I did every day and never had the chance to play beyond the ODAC tournament - that moment was for everyone that had ever and would ever step onto our field.
What did a Lynchburg College education do for your career?
I would not be the physician I am today without my time at LC. I had professors and coaches who truly understood my chosen path as a not only student athlete but also as a budding medical professional and an academic. The amazing people at LC allowed me to push myself to the limit and do all of these things at once. I was able to get my EMT certification and run the LCEMS, the rescue squad on campus. That was my first experience with and where my love of medicine began. Regularly, I missed class, science labs, and tests to be at practice and games or was even paged out urgently with my huge bag of medical supplies to help take care of an emergency on campus. My professors were always willing to go out of their way to make sure, even though I wasn't always in the classroom at scheduled times, that I didn't miss anything. LC allowed me to really do it all while still getting a top notch education.
Who on the LC campus most affected you or was the biggest positive influence?
I had many mentors in each aspect of my interests on campus. Certainly Coach Simmons pushed me on and off the field and was the most forgiving with my crazy schedule. Dean Eccles and Dean Azdell helped support everything I wanted to do with LCEMS. Throughout all this, Dean Sigler was there to guide me toward becoming the best student, much better than I ever dreamed I could be.
Can you describe your job a little bit?
I am an Emergency Medicine Physician at Virginia Commonwealth University; I deal with all types of emergencies that come in to our Level 1 trauma center's emergency department. I'd say my job is a combination of the shows "Trauma: Life in the ER" and "Scrubs."