Similarities abound between Andrew Bellis ’14 and Devin Geiman ’14. They chose to come to Gettysburg because of its academic prowess and because they both wanted to play soccer at the collegiate level. Both are among the top students in the senior class with near-perfect GPAs. They are both members of the Lambda Chi fraternity. Even their approach to playing soccer is similar according to former head coach Brett Kelly ’03.
“Their cerebral approach to the game is very similar,” said Kelly, who coached Bellis and Geiman throughout their collegiate careers. “They do a very good job of not letting emotions get involved in the game. They think of the game as students and try to deal with situations to the best of their ability.”
But it’s their latest achievement that will make the history books.
Bellis and Geiman were each named Academic All-Americans as selected by the College Sports Information Directors of America (CoSIDA). They are the first Academic All-Americans in the 83-year history of the men’s soccer program at Gettysburg.
Bellis, who earned third-team honors a year ago, was lauded as a first-team selection, while Geiman landed a spot on the second team.
While Bellis and Geiman have walked similar paths in their collegiate careers, the bricks that make up those paths have been very different.
A philosophy and political science double-major, Bellis has taken up classes and extracurricular activities geared toward the legal profession. Over the past few years, he has served key roles in the Eisenhower Institute and the Garthwait Leadership Center on campus. He worked at the Center for the Study of the Presidency and Congress and he served as interim campaign manager for Minnesota State Representative John Lesch. He is President of Lambda Chi Alpha and is a member of both the political science and pre-law honors societies.
Bellis did all of those things – and many more – while maintaining a 4.0 GPA in not one, but two social science disciplines.
“One of the strongest things Gettysburg has is the extra programs it offers,” said the Hershey, Pa., native. “I think you can almost get as much out of those as you can in the classroom. From real-world experience to networking to theoretical experience to practical applications…I wanted to take advantage of as many of those as I could. I knew that was going to be a big help to me later in life.”
Geiman’s list of extracurricular activities is also long and impressive, albeit with an entirely different focus. A member of Phi Beta Kappa with a 3.98 GPA, the New Freedom, Pa., native has spent many hours in campus labs for his science courses, but he still found time to serve as assistant treasurer and scholastic chair of Lambda Chi Alpha and tutor a young child from the community. Away from campus, he researched HIV in the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases and worked in local hospitals in York, Carlisle, and Gettysburg.
“Balancing academics and athletics is never an easy task,” said Geiman, a biochemistry and molecular biology major and business minor, “especially if you are a science major that has up to three labs a week. With that being said, all it takes is a good sense of time management, organization, and diligence.”
Their many similarities brought them together when they first came to campus. Through soccer and Greek life, their relationship grew and strengthened and as they enter the final semester of their college careers, they can look to each other for motivation and inspiration.
“It certainly helps having people like Devin around,” Bellis pointed out. “He’s a great person to look to when I feel swamped or over my head. He’s following the same track in a different academic discipline, but everything else is pretty much the same. He’s been a great person to look at and model after.”
“I’ve always been fond of Andrew since the day we first met during soccer pre-season,” said Geiman. “Within the last two years we have grown to be good friends and he is most certainly someone I will stay in touch with after we graduate.”
Bellis and Geiman have already set goals for their post-Gettysburg lives. Bellis aims to work with a consulting firm or “think tank” for a couple years before going back to school to get both his law degree and his PhD. Geiman already has a job lined up after graduation at Goldman Sachs in Hoboken, N.J.
“It’s pretty remarkable what those two have done, not only on the field but off the field over the last four years,” said Kelly. “We’ve been blessed to have those two in the same class. We haven’t heard the last of those two guys. They’re certainly going to do great things when they move on from here.”
Corey Jewart, associate director of athletic communications
Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition. Alumni include Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate, and other distinguished scholars. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.Contact: Mike Baker, assistant director of communications, 717.337.6521¿
Posted: Wed, 29 Jan 2014
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