In this issue
Front Page
Featured Story
Director's Corner
Alumni Spotlight
Event Calendar
Around Campus
Sports Report
Class Notes
Make A Gift
Archived Issues
Useful Links
Fine Arts Events
Career Center
UTD Mercury
Contact Info
Alumni Relations and
Annual Giving
972-UTD-ALUM
alumni@utdallas.edu
Office of Development
972-UTD-2295
development@utdallas.edu
Loyalty Fund
972-UTD-2295
Soccer Manager Bird Scores Personal Goal

Reprinted with permission from the UT Dallas Mercury
Story by Beau Trimble


David Bird, pictured far left, with the UTD men's soccer team while celebrating their ASC championship victory.

David Bird, pictured far left, with the UTD men's soccer team

celebrating their ASC championship victory. Media credit: Bruce Unrue

Business administration major David Bird rolls towards the lift onto the Commencement stage. Though bound by a wheelchair due to a birth defect, Bird said that there was only one obstacle that had truly worried him: Two years ago, his dedication to a job he loved almost kept him from earning his degree.

Originally a team manager for the men's basketball team at UT Arlington, Bird admits his studies played second fiddle to his job. After taking summer classes in 2007, Bird said he needed a change. A UTD student on probationary status, Bird made every effort to counter his past.

"I really did mess up at the other school … don't get me wrong, it was bad," Bird said. "But, I guess it was one of life's lessons … you can't take things for granted."

After a year hiatus to focus on school, Bird was brought back into the sports scene via a team manager position with the UTD men's soccer team. Sporting a Garland High School shirt during a shoot-around at the Activity Center, Bird was approached by coach Jack Peel, a fellow Garland alumnus. He offered Bird a position on the spot.

Bird worked with the UTD men's soccer team every step of the way to their eventual American Southwest Conference (ASC) victory. The championship ring on his left hand reminds him of the determination it takes to accomplish goals - both team and personal.

Biology sophomore and defender Ramiro Gonzalez said he took notice to Bird's presence immediately.

"He was a pretty important part of the team," Gonzalez said. "He was real big on making practices go smoothly."

Gonzalez said during stressful times, Bird was an extra friend on the team who could keep things lighthearted.

"He was just cool to sit and talk with," Gonzalez said. "He makes you laugh every now and then."

Bird went on to help the women's softball team in the spring and serve in an internship with the ASC Media Relations department, keeping track of stats and updating their website.

With degree practically in hand, Bird says he looks to move on to bigger and better things, setting his sights on continuing his path in the sports industry. His long-term goal is to obtain the position of sports information director at a university.

"I'm not the average person in a wheelchair," Bird said. "Nothing's going to stop me."

He made sure to note, though, that he will never forget his experience with UTD.

"I'm going to miss all the people. This school has given me a second chance," Bird said. "I'm kind of glad that the UTA thing did happen, because I really don't think I would be the same person as I am today."

Back to the Front Page
A publication of the
UT Dallas Office of
Alumni Relations
972-883-ALUM
alumni@utdallas.edu
 
Erin Dougherty, MPA, '03 '07
Director of Alumni Relations and Annual Giving
Catherine Solidon '02
Alumni Events Coordinator
Julie Rushing
Communications Coordinator
Tina Ly '10
Web Designer
Carly Price
Copy Editor
If you do not wish to receive future issues of the Alumni Link, please unsubscribe by sending an email to
alumnilink-request@utdallas.edu with "unsubscribe" in the subject line. Removal could take up to 10 business days.
The University of Texas at Dallas