Hockey is all about goals. So too is the game off the ice, although of a different variety – rather, putting in place a plan to achieve a desired outcome.
Whether the aim is to become a professional hockey player, or to simply skate alongside the best juniors in the country, goal setting is a big part of success for any budding talent, and former Swift Current Broncos forward Colin Stone was no exception.
In speaking with Junior Hockey Magazine as part of its CHL Leaders segment, Stone recalled the many life lessons he learned over his two seasons in the junior ranks, and how the steps he took to achieve his goals at that time helped him lay the foundation for where he is today.
“First and foremost, it taught me discipline and perseverance through challenging times. I certainly had to grow and mature at a young age to balance school and the 72-game schedule,” said Stone, who today works as a welding and materials engineer with TransCanada. “Looking back, the key to my success in hockey and in life after hockey was having the mindset to do what it takes to achieve my goals.”
Through dedication, commitment, and an undeniable work ethic, Stone skated in the Western Hockey League from 2002 to 2004, providing him with a platform to learn valuable life skills that he later applied both academically and in the professional world, and that became even more critical after his playing days ended due to an unfortunate injury.
“The next thing I knew, I had to make the ultimate decision to give up the game and pursue another career and life path,” Stone detailed. “I certainly give credit to the WHL and the Broncos because I was supported after my hockey career ended and they cared about how I was doing and ensuring my success after hockey as well.”
Ultimately, Stone extended the life lessons he learned at the rink in attending Lakehead University, where he earned a degree in civil engineering, an education he puts to use today as a professional in the oil and gas sector. In the end, it was an opportunity that became possible thanks to his time in the WHL that earned him access to the league’s scholarship program.
“It provided me with a step ahead in life without having to worry about the financial stress of debt and student loans,” Stone said. “To be honest, it wasn’t only the financial support, but the personal support as well. I was in constant communication with the league, which truly had an interest in ensuring I was successful in my academics and life after hockey. With their support both financially and personally, I was able to pursue my engineering degree.”
Listen to Colin Stone’s full interview with Junior Hockey Magazine here.