About Nicholas Taylor
Nicholas Taylor ’20 will be the first to tell you that before he arrived at Sage as a junior, other than on the basketball court he wasn’t coming close to reaching his potential.
Nick earned his associate degree from Fulton Montgomery Community College, but the whole time he was feeling like he had little direction and purpose.
Then a former basketball coach suggested he try Sage. That’s when everything began to change.
Nick made the Sage varsity basketball team as a walk-on, majored in Sport and Recreation Management, and today he’s working for Nike’s Pro Level Training and Titan Athletics, helping young athletes to take their basketball skills to the next level.
“From the first time I walked onto the Sage campus, people were introducing themselves to me,” Nick says. “I’d never experienced that before. And all my teachers were so helpful. I loved my professors. I’m still talking to them.”
The Sport and Recreation Management program was critically important for Nick in two key ways — it provided him with communication skills and connected him with people who were successful in jobs Nick wanted to have.
Eileen Brownell, an associate professor in the School of Management, was important in developing his leadership and communication skills. In her classes he was often asked to make presentations. That was painful at first, but he got better and better at it. His confidence in speaking in front of groups began to build.
“If someone had told me in high school that one day I’d have a goal of running my own business I would have laughed,” Nick says. “I was the shyest kid in high school. I wouldn’t even be doing this interview!”
Adjunct professor Robert Stulmaker, he says, is the one who taught him the value of making connections.
“He’d have guest speakers come in to talk to his students all the time,” Nick remembers. “He’d message us and say, You want to come to meet this person, it will be a valuable experience for you.”
And Nick says it would be valuable. He would always learn from these guest speakers. And, he says, he’s putting what he learned into practice all the time. And he’s not shy about saying he feels like he’s going to be successful in reaching his goals.
“From the first time I walked onto the Sage campus, people were introducing themselves to me. I’d never experienced that before. And all my teachers were so helpful. I loved my professors. I’m still talking to them.”