Running the Point
Valuable lessons in teamwork gave Chris Watts '22 a transformational experience at NC State.
For Chris Watts ’22, the idea and importance of teamwork came at an early age. Encouraged by his family, Chris picked up basketball, playing in organized leagues starting in kindergarten. From a family of basketball fans, Watts picked up the sport naturally, settling on a position that is synonymous with leadership—point guard.
A realization in third grade made the idea of working with a team stick. Often the leading scorer and a self-described ‘ball hog,’ Watts realized that winning games came easier if he involved his teammates rather than taking all the shots and learning to pass the ball.
Watts also discovered the game was more enjoyable by running pick-and-rolls and involving post players in the paint.
Even his favorite player, Kobe Bryant, who is currently fourth all-time with 33,643 points, averaged 4.5 assists per game in his career.
Watts chose to attend NC State after a campus tour and through the urging of several friends. It should come as no surprise that his passion for sports led him to Carmichael Gym during his first days on campus, playing pick-up games on the storied Courts 1-8 and building a foundation for the community he would make.
Inspired by the students working during intramural sports programs, Watts was hired to work as a facility assistant, eventually working his way into leadership positions, working as a facility supervisor. His experience as a student-employee brought the ‘point guard’ mentality full-circle.
“We’re working toward the same goal so let’s work together,” said Watts. “Let me help you, you help me, and let’s do this together.”
This year, Watts was recognized as a recipient of the Wellness and Recreation Friends and Family Student-Employee Scholarship during the 2021 Wolfies end-of-year student-employee celebration.
The scholarship is established to provide financial assistance to two undergraduate student employees who uphold the mission statement, encourage and inspire the Wolfpack community to live active and well, are respected by student employee peers for leadership qualities and innovation, are reliable and willing to contribute to the success of the team, and serve as a role model for healthy and balanced living.
“It made me feel like my work and effort is appreciated,” said Watts. “I just want to be known as a person that was always giving, energetic and enthusiastic about his work and always put his best foot forward.”
A textile engineering major, Watts hopes to work in the medical industry, working toward reducing waste and developing more sustainable products to allow people to live comfortably.