During the month of September, the Alumni Spotlight is going to profile some of our 2018 Belmont Athletic Hall of Fame Inductees.
Our first profile is Elizabeth Conyer Long.
Conyer Long helped usher in a new era for Belmont women's tennis in the Atlantic Sun Conference, making a lasting impact on and off the court. A two-time All-Atlantic Sun selection, Conyer rewrote the Bruin record book; establishing single-season (21) and career (65) records for victories that stand to this day. As a freshman in 2004, the Paducah, Kentucky native went a remarkable 20-1 en route to Atlantic Sun All-Freshman Team honors. That season, the Bruins went an NCAA Division I era-best 15-7.
Elizabeth, a four-time Intercollegiate Tennis Association (ITA) Scholar-Athlete, becomes the first women's tennis student-athlete of the NCAA Division I era to enter the Hall of Fame.
She recently spoke to BelmontBruins.com about her time at Belmont and her current life with her family in Wyoming.
Why did you choose Belmont?
My best friend from high school, Chelsea (Swab) Smith, was attending Belmont and raved about what a wonderful school it was. I loved that Belmont was a Christian University with xcellent academics, a beautiful campus, Division I athletics, smaller class sizes, and is located in Nashville, one of my favorite cities. It was a perfect fit for me.
What is your fondest athletic memory at Belmont?
That is such a hard question because I have so many fond memories from my time on the Belmont tennis team. I think the team road trips would have to be my very favorite memories. It was so much fun to get to travel and compete with such an amazing group of teammates. I loved the team camaraderie that developed from traveling and competing together. My former teammate, Linda Johansson, is still my closest friend and Godmother to my oldest son.
Who had the biggest influence on you during your athletic career at Belmont?
Coach Mark Srouji. I feel so blessed to have gotten to play for such a phenomenal coach. Mark helped me improve as a tennis player, and he is so knowledgeable about tennis. He also has the ability to challenge players to work hard and be the best they can be on the court but in a way that is still fun. He really cares about his players and wants them to be successful academically, on the court, and in all they do. I also felt so thankful to be at a university with such a wonderful athletic department. I remember how kind, helpful, and supportive the athletic department staff were to me especially Colette Keyser, Betty Wiseman, Mike Strickland, John Langdon, Renee Schultz, and Heather Copeland.
What is the most valuable thing you gained or learned from your time at Belmont?
My time at Belmont helped to form me into the adult I am. I am immensely thankful for all the relationships I developed at Belmont and for the positive influence they have had on my life.
What advice would you give to current members of the tennis team?
Enjoy every moment of your time at Belmont and your time on the tennis team! Enjoy the little things like getting to practice together as a team! It goes by quickly. Work hard and savor having the opportunity to play college tennis and to attend Belmont.
Who was your favorite professo and why?
I had so many fantastic professors at Belmont! I really enjoyed my classes with Dr. Marty Bell, Betty Wiseman, Dr. Sally Barton-Arwood, Dr. Vaughn May, and Dr. Sharon Crumpton. However, my very favorite professor was Dr. Merrie King. Dr. King is both an incredibly gifted teacher and one of the most caring, compassionate, kind people I have ever met. I still keep in touch with her, and I frequently use the many things she taught me.
Where do you live now?
Who is your employer? What is your occupation?
Since graduating, I have taught in pre-K, Kindergarten and Primary Montessori school classrooms, but I currently am homeschooling our children. I love using the skills and knowledge that I gained at Belmont each day as I work with my children.
Tell us about your family.
At the beginning of my sophomore year at Belmont, I met my husband Daniel on an airplane when I was flying back to Nashville. Daniel now works as a pathologist. We have been married for 11 years and have been blessed with three sons, Jonathan, Joshua, and Christopher. I am also so thankful for the continued love and support of my parents, Bill and Barbara, my two sisters, Chrissie and Angie, and my grandparents, Bill and Peggy.
If you are interested in attending this year's Athletic Hall of Fame Banquet on September 20th, contact Amy McGinnis at 615-460-5647 or at firstname.lastname@example.org.