Blake Hocking Speaks Three Languages and Breaks UMKC Track and Field Records

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Chemistry and Spanish majors | College of Arts and Sciences | 2015 | UMKC Track and Field

Where is UMKC taking you?

I’m getting a great education and meeting new people. This is my sixth semester here, and I’ve grown a lot each semester. I live with Brazilian students, and I visited them last summer in Brazil. I want to combine being quadrilingual with being a dentist. (Blake speaks English, Spanish and Portuguese, and is studying to become fluent in French).

What led you to UMKC?

In high school I was a nationally ranked athlete, and I looked at a lot of colleges. The (UMKC track) coach talked to my dad when we were visiting MU, and he came and visited my house. My parents are from Kansas City, so it seemed like a good fit.

Why did you choose UMKC?

I came here for the School of Dentistry and for track. I throw the shot, the discus, the hammer and the weight. I hold the UMKC school record for the outdoor shot put.

On January 31, you also broke the UMKC record for the indoor shot put. How does it feel to hold two UMKC records?

I feel it is a sign of my hard work, putting in hard work and remembering the journey it took to break the records, even when at times it seemed unreachable. It makes me want to see what my full potential is.

What are your lifelong goals?

I hope to earn a master’s degree in romance languages, then attend dental school. Maybe provide free dental care for the underprivileged. I want to travel abroad. Maybe live abroad. Maybe go into the military and work on a base overseas.

What motto do you live by?

Live life to the fullest and don’t look back.

What excites you?

When I learn new stuff. I like Netflix, but I feel life is too short to sit around. I want to feel at the end of the day that I know more than I did at the beginning of the day. I do better when I’m busy.

How has college inspired you?

I have learned to think more profoundly and aspire to do what I truly want to accomplish in life.

Since entering college, what have you learned about yourself?

I have learned that I can make a difference in people’s lives. I have been able to connect with students from all of the world on UMKC’s culturally diverse campus. I have been able to surround myself with people who share common interests with me and through them, I have discovered who I am as a person and what I want to do in life.

What’s the best piece of advice you have ever received from a professor?

Remember the journey towards a goal, not only the final destination, for it is the journey that defines the person.

What do you admire most at UMKC?

I admire how professors take extra time to work with their students, to help the students understand the material at hand in class.

What’s your greatest fear?

My greatest fear is being insignificant in life. I want to make a change in the world and be remembered for how I was able to make a positive difference in others’ lives.

What is one word that best describes you and why?

Spontaneous is the best word to describe me because I have always been an advocate of surprises and I want to see where life takes me, though I do not always know what will happen beforehand.