By Jeff Shearer
AUBURN, Ala - Balancing grad school with a full-time career will be a challenge, but Auburn’s Jordon Granger figures he can handle it.
He’s already juggled four years of varsity basketball in the Southeastern Conference while earning a degree in Public Administration.
Granger plans to pursue a master’s degree while beginning his career in insurance and investments.
“I want to be a big investment broker,” Granger said. “I want to be a financial professional. Right now, it’s just insurance and savings. Investments will come later. I hope to get my securities license.”
Granger wants to impart financial wisdom to fellow student-athletes.
“Teaching them about saving their money, thinking about the future,” he said. “Putting your money to work for you, instead of spending your money on things that really aren’t necessary.”
When Granger walks across the stage to receive his Auburn University degree in two weeks, he will become the first college graduate in his family.
“My dad and my mom went to college for a little bit,” he said. “And that kind of inspired me to take the path and finish what they started.”
Earning a full athletic scholarship allowed Granger to graduate debt-free.
“That’s big. I feel for a lot of my fellow students who have student loans,” Granger said. “I don’t know what I would do if I weren’t going to college on scholarship. I probably would try to get a job at a retail store out of high school.”
Granger won two state championships in high school in St. Louis, earning Missouri Player of the Year honors.
“Growing up, I wanted to use basketball as a tool to help me reach a world I never thought would be possible,” he said. “And that’s being at Auburn in a great community, flying around the country, meeting new people, playing basketball, the sport I love to play.”
Auburn’s academic staff supported Granger throughout his college career.
“They have a team of people, tutors, who make sure that you get your job done,” he said. “Make sure that you get your work in on time. They’re very helpful in meeting deadlines, and balancing stuff on the road. We have tutoring sessions on the road to help you get your work done, so that’s big.”
Granger’s advice to incoming student-athletes focuses on academic.
“Take advantage of the moment, and do not take anything for granted, because there are a lot of people who want to be in your position,” Granger said. “Buckle down in your books, because you won’t be able to play the next semester or the first semester if you don’t have your books taken care of first.”
Granger’s days of running the stadium steps with his teammates at 6 a.m. have ended, but the lessons he learned as a student-athlete at Auburn will continue to inspire.
“It pays benefits and dividends outside the sport, because when you’re taking that test and taking that quiz, and you’re like, ‘Man, did I put the work in beforehand to pass?’ You did, because you were able to be disciplined and sit down, and study and get the work done, so when it’s time for the game, or the test, you’re prepared to ace it.”
Jeff Shearer is a Senior Writer at AuburnTigers.com. Follow him on Twitter: Follow @jeff_shearer