New YSP graduate hopes to tackle sports world as an agent

Daechanea Williams sitting on an Ohio statue in cap and gown with her arms raised in the air

New YSP graduate hopes to tackle sports world as an agent

By Paige Galperin

As an aspiring sports agent, Daechanea Williams has dreams of someday supporting athletes as they compete on the world's biggest stages. Thanks to the Young Scholars Program (YSP), however, Williams now has the opportunity to walk across another big stage: the Schottenstein Center's graduation stage as part of the Autumn 2023 commencement ceremony this December.

As a first-generation student from Akron, Williams was not sure she would ever be able to attend college, let alone graduate. The Young Scholars Program gave her the academic and financial support she needed to make her dreams a reality.

“I really wanted to go to college, and my mom always told me she didn't have the money to do it, so this is my one opportunity,” Williams said. “I am here because of the Young Scholars Program.”

Pre-collegiate experiences working as an assistant athletic trainer for Buchtel High School led Williams to come to The Ohio State University on the pre-athletic training path, although she eventually settled on a sports industry major with a business minor. Williams also prepared for a future career in sports management as a Recruitment Host for the Buckeye football team.

“If you've ever been to a game, you know how the energy is in that stadium. It's overwhelmingly great. You just take it all in,” Williams commented. “That is one of my best experiences, especially with it applying to my career.”

Williams is not just a leader in the sports arena, however. She also is the treasurer of the Delta Sigma Theta sorority, the Director of Administration and Communications for the National Panhellenic Council (NPHC), and a member of the Minority Collegiate Outreach and Support Team (MCOST).

Most meaningful to Williams is her work as an ambassador and Peer Success Leader for YSP, where she assists with summer events bringing high school students to Ohio State's campus.

“We were only there for a week, but within that week, you get to know those kids so much,” Williams noted. “Part of my job was to review their [college application] essays and pick things that they could add or take out or emphasize. Reading their essays allowed me to really connect with them and just understand, ‘I was once in your shoes.'”

Giving back to YSP is especially important to Williams because of all of the resources and support the program gave her, both personally and professionally.

“They [members of the Young Scholars Program] are my lifesavers. We're like a big family. I love them so much,” Williams said. “YSP definitely provided me with so many seminars and professional development, so I appreciate them for that, as well.”

Following graduation, Williams plans to move to Atlanta, Georgia. As one of just twelve students selected to attend Bleacher Report's ElevateHer conference for young women in sports, Williams hopes to find a job in the local sports industry through connections she made at the event. She also plans to pursue a law degree at either Georgia State University, Atlanta's John Marshall Law School, or Clark Atlanta University.

Although she is moving outside of Ohio, Williams says she will always appreciate the opportunities, support, and community she found as a Buckeye.

“The resources are definitely different from a lot of schools, and [so are] the networking opportunities that you have here, as well,” Williams said. “The amount of pride and emotion that goes into being a Buckeye is like no other.”