NASHVILLE, Tenn. – Working hard is something that Demi Washington has always believed in, especially when it comes to filling her time off the court.
“When I was in school, my friend asked me if I would take his shift one night at work,” Washington said. “I didn’t even work there. But, he said it was really easy and that they would train me and maybe even give me a job. I was broke, so I said okay.”
Covering a shift for a friend sparked a love of working for something that she could call her own – money.
“I don’t like asking for money,” said Washington. “I grew up not having to worry but have always wanted to work for something I can call my own. Money is something I can do that with and spend however I want. But, in order to get money I have to work. It was always something I wanted to do for myself.”
Even after moving to Maryland, Washington found herself going home every weekend and working. It became a comfort – something she could do that was “normal”.
“It was a sense of normalcy for me,” Washington said. “I was always travelling with basketball and other sports, I wanted to do something that was deemed normal.”
Washington hopes to take that work ethic and translate it on to the court this season for Vanderbilt women’s basketball.
“Just like wanting money – I want to succeed and be good. I try my best to be as consistent as possible and believe good things will come through and show on the court. That kind of goes back to working, if you work hard at your job you might get paid more. It all goes hand-in-hand.”
Not just on the court, the freshman feels that her background will help her adjust to the college lifestyle and work load of a college athlete.
“Especially in the food business you learn that people are mean and don’t care how you feel. That’s kind of why I wanted to work in the first place was to get a sense of how the real world is. When you’re in schools and private schools you don’t really get that so coming to college can be a culture shock. I feel like I’m prepared for it.”
Finding a new sense of normal on and off the court will be a test for Washington, but one that she welcomes with open arms on West End.