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Former player Ron Powlus helps players develop life outside football

There were high expectations for quarterback Ron Powlus when he arrived to play for Notre Dame as a student 20 years ago. He survived the pressure and ended up making a career out of the sport he loves.

Powlus started his professional career at Notre Dame as the Director of Player Development in 2005.

He then worked under Charlie Weis at Kansas, but returned to Notre Dame as the Director of Player Development.

"I've had the great opportunity to be at Notre Dame for the large part of my professional life now. Having played here and coached and back here now in this player development role, it's sort of come full circle. In my role, I get to do a lot to help the guys manage their life off the football field. In my time as a student athlete at Notre Dame, I had a lot of different experiences; ups, downs, injuries, successes, great experiences on the field and off the field," Powlus said.

In his role in player development, he coordinates community service projects like the softball game against local law enforcement that raised money for families of officers who died on duty.

He also brings in public speakers on a variety of topics ranging from Title IX, to sexual assault prevention. He even teaches a freshman seminar class once a week to help them navigate the first year experience.

"I can relate those experiences to the guys and help them find success in their experience," Powlus said.

Powlus also spearheaded the internship and study abroad programs.

For 3 weeks each May, student athletes have the opportunity to travel or work before returning to campus for summer workouts.

This past summer, 9 football players studied abroad at places like Brazil and Greece.

It's all a part of the 4-for-40 concept the coaches use for recruiting. The goal is to give the players the tools to succeed on and off the field after they leave Notre Dame.

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