Through sheer perseverance, Penn women’s soccer senior Jadyn Wilensky demonstrates time and time again that nothing will stop her from striving for success.
Born in Dallas, Texas, Wilensky actually found herself playing soccer up north over at Georgetown Day School after relocating to Kensington, Md. However, it was through her local soccer club that Penn recruiters were able to witness her raw strength and versatility as a defender, and it was not long after that Wilensky would start suiting up for the Red and Blue.
Coming to Penn, Wilensky knew that she had a chance to make the most out of her many talents. In addition to being named captain of the team this year due to her leadership and on-field presence, she is also part of the Sigma Tau Delta International English Honor Society.
“I’ve always known that I wanted to work in English, but I had been engaged in the pre-medical courses as well, and I wanted to be like my mom who is an OB-GYN,” Wilensky said. “After a bit of time in the pre-med sector, I found that it was a bit distracting from my passion for my honors society.”
However, there cannot be a rise to a person’s story without a fall, and Wilensky’s story of collegiate triumph is no exception. It was in October of her junior year when she broke her foot, sidelining her for the majority of the soccer season; she was not able to return to workouts until late February 2020, two weeks before COVID-19 had put a halt to the spring semester.
Though this was an unexpected setback, it wasn't going to stop Wilensky. She was determined to get back on the soccer field, providing the leadership and impenetrable defense that she is famous for.
“Without the help of my teammates, I would never be able to make it this far,” Wilensky said. “The coaching staff [both new and old], the other girls, we are like one big fostering family constantly helping each other, and I’ve felt that since the moment I came here as a freshman. I literally did my rehab with Chase [Geffert], which just meant so much to me.“
Wilensky truly feels a strong connection to her teammates, and it shows on and off the field. Treating each other like family, Wilensky has learned from her predecessors on the team. She continuously tries to be an aspiring leader to the underclassmen, and her role will only increase as a captain this year.
She also writes for the organization Voice in Sport, which is geared towards empowering female athletes across the globe.
As a possible spring 2021 season is upon the Quakers, Wilensky is back and better than ever. She hopes to help lead the team to a winning season and to continue her work in the English Honors program. After graduation, she plans on taking post-baccalaureate classes to continue her career in academia, and hopes to continue inspiring young female athletes everywhere.
“If there is any advice I can give to other aspiring women athletes, it is to enjoy this wonderful opportunity while you have it to the fullest,” she said. “Be the best person you can be on and off the field, and don’t forget to be respectful while having fun.”
Based on the way Wilensky plays on the field, it is clear that she practices what she preaches.