NEAC Student-Athlete Spotlight: Mikaela Smith, Penn State Berks

NEAC Student-Athlete Spotlight: Mikaela Smith, Penn State Berks

GANSEVOORT, N.Y. - Each week throughout the fall semester, the North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) will highlight student-athletes from one of the conference's member institutions through a brief Q & A. Female student-athletes will be featured each Thursday followed by a male student-athlete spotlight each Friday. Today, we meet Mikaela Smith from Penn State Berks.

Name: Mikaela Smith
Women's Cross Country
Hometown: Sinking Spring, Pa.

What is your current class year and major?

I am a senior studying Kinesiology.

Why did you choose to attend Penn State Berks?

I chose to attend Penn State Berks because of their amazing kinesiology curriculum, small classes, and to run cross country.

What does it mean to you to be a member of the Penn State Berks cross country team?

It means that I am committed and part of a close knit family where everyone supports one another to suceed.

If you could pick one favorite moment at Penn State Berks, what would it be?

The best moment was being the first Berks cross country team to win the NEAC Championship.

What are your career aspirations or future goals?

I want to be a Physical Therapist and to help those become stronger after coming back from an injury. Exercise is the best medicine.

Are you involved in additional activities, clubs, etc. on campus outside of athletics?

I am a part of THON which raises money for kids with cancer.

Give us three words that best describe being a Division III student-athlete. 

Strong-willed, committed, determined.

What is your pregame routine? Any superstitions? 

My pre-race routine is eating an apple and a granola bar. I always wear the same sports bra and fruit socks with my hair in one braid.

Share with us some of your favorites:

Food: Pineapple

Professional Team or Player: Shalene Flanagan

Movie: The Little Mermaid

Class at Penn State Berks: Anatomy and Physiology

Finally, what makes you #NEACStrong? 

I am #NEACStrong because no matter what I continued to compete and never gave up when competition was hard. I always give my all to succeed not just individually but as a team. I am confident in how much I put into my training and know it will show when I get on the course.

To learn more about Penn State Berks and Nittany Lions athletics, visit


The North Eastern Athletic Conference (NEAC) has 12 NCAA Division III member institutions which include: Cazenovia College, College of Saint Elizabeth, Gallaudet University, Keuka College, Lancaster Bible College, Pennsylvania College of Technology, Pennsylvania State University – Abington, Pennsylvania State University – Berks, SUNY Cobleskill, Morrisville State, SUNY Polytechnic Institute, and Wells College. Associate members are: Cedar Crest College (W Swimming), D’Youville College (W Lacrosse), Hilbert College (M&W Lacrosse), Medaille College (M&W Lacrosse), Rutgers University – Camden (M Golf), and Wilson College (M Volleyball). The NEAC has partnered with the North Atlantic Conference in the sport of men’s tennis and with the Colonial State Athletic Conference in the sport of Field Hockey. For more information, please visit: