The Class of 2019 will be inducted into the M-Club Hall of Fame during the annual festivities on Fri., Oct. 25 in the J.W. Jones Student Union Ballroom and will be recognized during the Homecoming football game on Sat., Oct. 26. Tickets for the Friday evening banquet are $25 each and may be purchased by contacting Kiersten Orton (firstname.lastname@example.org) in the athletics office at 660-562-1977. Seating for the event is limited and the deadline to reserve your spot at the banquet is Oct. 18, or until tickets are sold out.
By Trent Spinner
Athletic Communications/Media Relations Student Assistant
On the track, Venus (Harris) Jewett was one of the most ferocious runners that Northwest has ever seen. From being an All-American to helping establish a winning program, there was one accomplishment that escaped her.
Now, 32 years from her first All-America accolade, she is being enshrined into the M-Club Hall of Fame.
In her two years at Northwest, she had made various marks that have stood the test of time as she holds multiple school records. But her most impressive achievement was helping set a standard for all Northwest track athletes.
“One of my favorite memories at Northwest was becoming the first Bearcat All-American, discovering that,” Harris said. “That’s a big deal, that was great for me.”
The 1987 women’s team helped build the foundation of Northwest women’s track as there were three women that accomplished the feat of becoming an All-American. None, however, were more dominant than Harris.
Her blazing time at the Indoor Championships in the 400 meters even came as a shock to her. However, before she even stepped foot on the track one of her coaches knew that record books were already starting to be rewritten.
“I was elated because there was another coach on the team and she told me, ‘I dreamed that you ran a 53,’ I was like yeah right,” she said. “The next day I ran a 53 and when someone said, ‘You ran a 53’ I was both excited and tired.”
Harris’s energy and competitive drive worked as a force to be reckoned with. During her time at the national championships, the only thing that she focused on was beating her specific rivals and creating healthy competition. Even after posting a school record at the national meet.
“I was happy, I was trying to beat the competition… the time at that time didn’t matter I just wanted to beat the competition,” Harris said. “It was just cross-town rivalries, who is going to win, who is better than who.”
Looking back at her time at Northwest one of the biggest contributors to the success she had came from this motivational card that she made at the beginning of the season. Today, Harris still holds onto a card like that to help her accomplish goals.
“I created an inspiration card with a time and goal on it and focused on it all year,” she said. “I think that vision card was the most responsible thing for my success.”
She blazed past people for two straight years and her records have stayed on top of the leaderboard for decades. It is only fitting that she deserves her name on the wall for one more thing as she is inducted into the M-Club Hall of Fame.
“Being inducted, first of all, it’s an honor, it’s a big deal,” she said. “Looking back I’m happy that there were those people to ignite that fire inside me, because healthy competition… will always be the fuel for you to be better.”