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On Campus

Jerome Kersey, '84, Inspires Graduates

Jerome Kersey, '84Hard work is the secret sauce," said Longwood alumnus Jerome Kersey, who played in the National Basketball Association (NBA) for 17 years and was known for his work ethic. When you stop working on your game, you stop succeeding."

Some 742 bachelor's degrees and 172 master's degrees were awarded May 9. Kersey, who attended Longwood from 1980 to 1984 and received his degree in 2006, dispensed career advice drawn from his professional basketball career. "You will do work you think is beneath you. It is not. And you aren't the first person to get the assignment or react with indignation. You will not enter the game as an MVP, and veterans won't treat you like one until you earn that through hard work, sacrifice, and a lot of humbling lessons. Championships are not for the faint of heart."

Kersey, a Clarksville native, still holds 10 basketball records at Longwood, where, during his senior season, he earned 1st Team All-America and State Player of the Year honors and led the nation's Division II players in rebounding. He played in the NBA, mostly with the Portland Trail Blazers, from 1984 to 2001, twice helping lead the team to the NBA Finals and winninga championship with the San Antonio Spurs in 1999.