The new life of Alessandro Gianotti

Thursday, April 13, 2023

Here comes another interview. A wonderful chat and above all a splendid testimony on what it means to live life as a student-athlete.

The floor to Alessandro Gianotti, middle blocker 201 cm, gold medal at the U19 World Championships in 2019 and silver at the U20 European Championship the following year, who since summer 2021 has chosen to continue his sports and academic career overseas.

Alessandro is studying Entrepreneurial Management at BYU (Brigham Young University, Provo, Utah), his team is currently No. 6 in the NCAA national ranking and will enter the final stages of the championship in the coming weeks.

We often talk about how this experience can change the lives of the kids who are leaving: up to now what is your balance on and off the court?

From my point of view, I can confirm everything positive that is said about this experience. For me, coming here was like starting a new life. I had the opportunity to meet so many new people, see so many places that until now I only "peeked" on my phone. Having the opportunity to study at a university here in America, as well as providing you with an incredible wealth of experience, opens many doors for the near future. As for the field, I had the opportunity to interface with different methods than those used in our country. Anyone who knows me knows, I'm quite competitive when it comes to volleyball, and coming here has stimulated me even more to give 100%.

The impact with a different reality than ours is what all the student-athletes underline, as you confirmed. Daily life and study, what are the main differences compared to Italy and what personally did you find more difficult?

Exactly, there are many differences between American and Italian reality. The way in which universities and sports are conceived in the States is totally different from what happens in Italy. As a student-athlete, the commitments are very many and it is not surprising if, for example, during the season you are away for 4 days in a row and you cannot wait for lessons and various courses. But what differentiates the USA is that attention is paid to these details and the professors are generally very willing to help when they can. The thing that probably created the most difficulty for me is the American way of thinking. When you enter a new country, or even a continent as in this case, it is obvious that there are differences, and this is one of them, that is, the way of approaching each other, of understanding interpersonal relationships, and communicating in general.

Differences that we imagine there are also in the court. How did the team welcome you and what in particular struck you about American volleyball?

Luckily for me, I have a team that to define as fantastic is an understatement. The guys are wonderful people and welcomed me with arms open from day one. There are other foreigners in the team, so all of them are more or less used to it and know what it means to have a person in the team who comes from another country and who obviously doesn't know the language very well, much less the people. What struck me about American volleyball is the availability in terms of gyms, physiotherapy and equipment that I don't even think Superlega can offer players. The university here enables its athletes to perform at their best.

Life as a student-athlete is very demanding. What do you think could be the main skills to best support this experience between sport and study?

I agree it's tough. Life between workouts, weights at 6:30 in the morning and exams can get really stressful, which is why I believe that the most important skill is planning and managing time and energy to devote to each individual activity.

To conclude, you left to have an experience, to confront yourself with a "different" volleyball, to learn and grow. Regarding your future and the world of work, what do you think all this can give you to achieve your ambitions?

I have no doubts when I say this was the best choice of my life. This experience, in addition to giving me a degree and therefore the possibility of finding a job at the end of my volleyball career, has given me important life lessons, taught me to get involved, open myself up to new opportunities and people, above all it taught me to never give up. I think this will give me motivation and strength that will make me go even further in life. Obviously all this would not have been possible without the support of the people dear to me, like my family in the first place, but also of all the Sportlinx360 staff who, from the first moment, proved able to meet my wishes and requests , with the highest professionalism I could imagine.


Appears in Athletics Home: