The Big House, Ann Arbor
An SPH student shares what "Meee-eeee-chigan" means to him. Photo by Peter Smith at the Big House in Ann Arbor.
“There’s a sense of pride when I walk into the stadium today that’s different than when I was on the team. It’s hard to put in words—just walking in, the tradition, knowing that I was part of that program, that I helped shape it in some small way.
The one thing I really valued about the football program was this idea that the team itself—the program, Michigan—was bigger than just you. Especially during game days, when you went out through that tunnel, you felt all that excitement, all the fans. You could hear it, and now, with the new addition, it’s even louder.
So coming here is different now because I’m one of the fans. I’m rooting for the team. I loved being a part of the program, and I loved playing football, but now I really enjoy what I’m studying in public health, and the difference I’m going to make. The cool part is that what I learned through the program, from Coach [Lloyd] Carr, has actually allowed me to be successful in the School of Public Health. Coach Carr really cared about building our character, and those influences are still there. But the hours we put into school and playing football were an awful lot. It’s nice to be focusing on one thing. I don’t even know if I could do it—a public health master’s program, with football!”
—Mark Spencer, first-year M.P.H. student, environmental health sciences; punter, UM football team, 2002–2005