Coldagelli Combines a Passion for Faith, Sports, and Writing
–By Rachel Townsend ’16
While Joshua Coldagelli ’17 has always had a passion for sports, a love for writing has recently bloomed as well. He combined both recently with an article published on ReFrame Media’s blog, Think Christian, “The Augustinian joy of the Golden State Warriors.”
Coldagelli heard ReFrame Media’s editor, Trinity alumnus Josh Larsen ‘96, speak at chapel about sports culture with a Christian involvement. After meeting for lunch in the Bootsma Bookstore Café, Coldagelli pitched his article idea to Larsen. After numerous drafts, the article was ready for publication.
For Coldagelli, writing used to be a chore. However, his attitude has changed since arriving at Trinity. After attempting to become “Internet famous” with a Vlog his freshman year that received a grand total of 122 YouTube views, he decided to embark on a slightly different path. As part of a New Year’s resolution to write weekly, he launched a blog, Faith, Flannel, and Practice. “It’s one of the best changes I have ever made in my life,” he said. “It is such a relaxing hour to sit down in my room or at a coffee shop and just process thoughts and things that are going on around me.”
Like most writers, he sometimes loses inspiration. “It is hard to stick to at times,” he said. Rather than chasing a full-time writing career, he is pursuing a career coaching basketball and works as a student assistant for men’s basketball coach Brandon Nicol. “I’ve learned more than I ever thought I could about basketball,” he said. However, he wants to keep writing, even if it is just a hobby.
Coldagelli credited his professors at Trinity for instilling his passion for writing. Undecided about his major when he first came to Trinity, he decided his sophomore year to major in communication arts and minor in English and philosophy. His communication arts professors, including Dr. Craig Mattson and Dr. Bethany Keeley-Jonker, have provided encouragement. He also credited Dr. Erick Sierra, associate professor of English. “He pushed me to think in ways I never had before,” he said.
Now, six-page papers no longer feel strenuous; they simply feel like larger blog posts. As a blogger, Coldagelli must deal with a readership that can change day by day. “I need to remind myself it’s not about the reads and that it is about the writing itself,” he said. It’s also about his faith. “Faith has been everything for me in this, because faith is everything. It might be a smile of a classmate or a chapel message that helps a student grow with God and both can be found at Trinity, both have helped me grow in my faith.”
Coldagelli has some advice for current and future students pursuing writing. “Be willing to ask people about anything and everything. Every big thing that has happened in my life started with an email asking someone for a meeting or advice. Life isn’t going to come to you,” he said. After all, the piece in Think Christian came about because he was willing to reach out Larsen, tailor his drafts, and create an article based on his talent and guided by those at Trinity.
Most important, he advised, “Work for the Lord, and joy will come.”