by Meron Teweldemedin
Seneca College’s backline defender—Jordan Burke—has had a difficult but incredible journey to her dream program in Event Management and Creative Design at Seneca.
The 22-year-old mother was raised in Ajax along with her brother. Her father was from Jamaica and her mother was from New Brunswick. When Burke was young, she participated in all types of sports including Taekwondo, swimming, gymnastics, and soccer.
“I started off playing multiple sports. I did Taekwondo and got my black belt in Taekwondo. I did swimming, gymnastics, all those things. And then finally, I started playing soccer. I've been playing soccer ever since I was seven. My dad's Jamaican, and my mom is from New Brunswick. So, French Canadian,” said Burke.
After graduating High School Burke knew she wanted to pursue a university degree and attended Ryerson University.
“I realized I wanted to stay close to home. So, I ended up going to Ryerson University for a year. But I tore my meniscus, so I wasn't able to play in the season. And I was undeclared as well, I didn't have a major I didn't really know what I wanted to do.” Burke added “So I was taking like criminology courses, social, social sociology, courses, and just random things just to figure out what I wanted to do. But I realized that I did want to be a police officer and the university just didn't feel right for me.
Path to Seneca College
At Seneca College, Burke took the Police Foundation program and 911 Emergency. She says she loved both programs and didn’t regret taking them. Eventually Burke decided to pursue her dream career which was Event Management and Creative Design after taking 911 Emergency.
After having her daughter Burke had to manage various and she says it was tough. During that time, she says that soccer was the only thing keeping her sane. Soccer practice helped her during this time.
“Taking those couple of hours every day just to go to practice or go to games like it was a real like stress reliever and a good like step out of reality when you're juggling with so much,” said Burke.
Burke has won many awards such as OCAA East Division Player of the Year, and CCAA All-Canadian. Burke says that although this season was important, last season meant way more to her as she had won awards after coming back from having her daughter.
“Last year was very special to me because I had just come back from having my daughter. And luckily, the timing worked out with everything, I didn't have to take a season off because I had her during COVID.” Burke added “So, as soon as sports started to come back into play, I was able to come back as well. So, it was just it was so motivating. And so empowering, knowing that I had just had a child a few months earlier and just automatically started playing soccer right away.
Burke says that she hopes to one day have her own décor company, where event planners can come and request work for weddings and corporate events.