What began as a love of soccer has sparked a career in medicine for Jadyn Matthews, who has signed a letter of intent with Cornel University and will study medicine at the esteemed educational institution.
An accomplished soccer player, Matthews received offers from numerous colleges to play for them, but she held out for a school that would enable her to prepare for and pursue a medical career while playing at the Division I level. The Ivy-League University provides both of those opportunities.
Matthews’ parents are both natives of Jamaica and her mother is related to Olympian Donald Quarrie. In a family of track runners, Matthews broke with tradition and forged a path in soccer. She first took the soccer field at the age of 4 and has since carved out a stunning career in the sport.
When a girl’s league wasn’t available, she joined a boy’s travel team. She soon displayed an aptitude for the sport and began working with a soccer and professional trainer. She’s the newest member of the Jamaican Women’s National Soccer Team and participated in a training camp for the Jamaica Under -20 Reggae Girlz team.
She’s now part of the Jamaica National team and attributes her success to perseverance, practice and patience. She was also part of the United States Olympic Development Program (ODP) and participated in the 2018 CONCACAF Caribbean Women’s Qualifier held in Haiti.
One of Matthews’ goals while with the Jamaican National team is to improve the situation for women soccer players in Jamaica. She noted that there’s an entire community of girls and women athletes that don’t have the same opportunities as those in the U.S.
Many in her current team have never seen a single college coach. It’s in stark contrast to the system in the U.S. in which coaches regularly scout games each weekend. If Matthews pursues that goal with the same determination as she has other benchmarks, the world will be seeing a lot more female competitors from Jamaica in the future.
Photo Source: Jay Matthews IG