SENIOR PROFILE: From the baseball field to the field of law

May 10, 2018

PROFILE elijah mckinnis
Michael Kendrick

Every Monday at 7 a.m., students awaken to their alarm clocks in preparation for classes that start at 8.

Graduating senior Michael Kendrick, however, is usually already awake and into his daily routine even before his alarm sounds, as he has become accustomed to the grind of the school semester from years of prior experience and lessons learned.

Kendrick’s morning routine usually consists of making breakfast, turning on the TV to watch either ESPN or the popular lawyer series Suits. After breakfast he goes on to shower, brushes his teeth, washes his face, etc.

He continues his routine by sorting through his vast variety of clothing items ranging from Ralph Lauren button-ups, Bape, Comme Des Garcon and Givenchy T-shirts, Balmain and Raf Simons jeans, designer slacks, Ysl denim jackets, Supreme jackets, Stone Island joggers, Maison Margiela shoes, Adidas Yeezy Boots, and Off White long sleeves, all of which are expensive, high-end clothing items.

Kendrick has dreams of co-owning and opening a clothing retail Boutique in Los Angles as a secondary avenue of income. Kendrick likes to compare his fashion style over the years with the likes of fashion moguls like Rapper, model and entrepreneur Kid Cudi, Louis Vuitton fashion designer Virgil Abloh and Rapper and Entrepreneur Kanye West in regard to status and pull in the fashion retail industry.

Before departure for campus, Kendrick looks over his fit one last time, making minor adjustments -- rolling up sleeves, cuffing pants, wearing black socks, white socks or no socks. He leaves his apartment complex at University Corner, jumps into his Lexus RX300 truck and zooms off usually just in time around 7:50 a.m. to ensure he makes his first class on time.

Growing up in Homewood, Illinois, a suburb of Chicago, Kendrick traveled to the city to play baseball, usually commuting about 30 minutes to play at local city park districts in Chicago, eventually leading him to attend Brother Rice, a high school within the cities limits.

When asked if he believes his high school experiences have helped him in his transition to college, he said, "No doubt having to wake up at basically the same time as I do now when I was younger definitely has helped me to be able to wake up in a timely manner now. And when I wake up, my body is so used to waking up at that time that I am not super sleepy and I can go on to handle my business and not waste much time or effort."

"My high school experiences have also helped me cope with the adversity I've faced throughout my life and baseball career while balancing school, particularly here at Claflin. My determination has been challenged with baseball, as even though I am used to being overlooked to a certain degree and having to prove the doubters wrong, it became a burden. But all my experiences have helped me grow in the end and nothing comes as a surprise to me anymore."

When asked about how it feels to be overlooked, he said, “Baseball was never going to last forever but I have always wanted to be someone who was successful in life, so of course I had backup plans. I know that I am going to be successful. Sports was only one avenue to acquire the bag."

When asked about his sacrifice, future job and graduate school, he said, "I know that all the studying for the LSAT test, endless hours in libraries and apprenticeships, will pay off at Howard Law when I graduate in the top 15 percent of my class. After that I am going to pass the Bar exam, then I, Michael Kendrick, will be in line to become a reputable business lawyer and I will have the same opportunity as a top athlete to earn wealth in the future. However, my job choice will offer me more longevity and job security."

Fellow senior and business administration major Harold Smith, who hails from Atlanta and is a friend and teammate of Kendrick, had a few parting words for his friend attending law school in Washington next semester.

"I know without a doubt that if I had to pick someone to argue with me or on my behalf, it would have to be Mike," Smith said. "If it’s anybody that can argue someone down breath for breath and point out every flaw in their argument, it has got to be him, whether its sports or just ... stuff. He lives to disagree."



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