Like Father, Like Son
Amit Hefer brings his passion for soccer to Westminster’s team
by Dariia Miroshnikova (’18)
The son of a professional soccer player in Israel, Amit Hefer (’22) developed a love for the sport at a young age. “My first word was ball,” Amit says. “According to my mom, I’ve always had a ball in my hands, no matter where we were going.” Ever since he was a little boy, he has looked up to his father and devoted his time and effort to playing soccer.
Growing up, Amit learned from his dad that just as every game comes to an end, so does a career as a professional athlete. “My dad always told me that education comes first,” explains Amit. “No matter what, be good at school first, and then soccer comes next,” Amit recalls of his father’s advice. His father motivated him to study abroad in a place where he could balance education and sports. Drawn to the college’s athletics department, Amit came to Westminster College hoping to reach new heights.
“When I graduate and have my degree computer information systems , I will decide if I want to keep playing soccer—that would be great—but if not, I would still be able to get a good job,” he says.
Dreaming about America
When Amit was younger, he watched American movies and thought it to be a place where he belonged. “When I was about 15, I was watching all these movies and got this idea that maybe I could to America ,” Amit says.
Through a friend, Amit found out about Westminster’s soccer program and the coach, Josh Pittman. Impressed by all the good things he heard about the team and coaching staff, Amit submitted a video of himself, hoping to get accepted into the soccer program.
Amit credits Coach Pittman, who received his video, for making it possible for him to attend Westminster. He says that Coach Pittman was invested in every step of the process and was consistent in his communication with Amit, leading up to his acceptance and first day at Westminster.
“He was really interested in how I was doing and that really meant a lot to me,” Amit says. “I remember he would always clear his schedule to speak with me about any questions.”
Coming from another country, Amit had to adapt to the way people play soccer in America. “On the field, it’s a different kind of soccer,” he explains. “Something that I know for sure will happen on the field in Israel won’t happen here.”
His hard work did not go unnoticed. Amit received the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference (RMAC) Freshman of the Year award after his first season on the team. “That’s something we don’t have in Israel,” he says. “That’s the of college soccer: you recognition, and people appreciate what you do on the field.”
The support of his teammates has made Amit’s transition to Westminster smooth and free of stress because he has found people whom he can always count on. “We are winning and losing together, and we are friends after it all,” he says.
About the Westminster Review
The Westminster Review is Westminster University’s bi-annual alumni magazine that is distributed to alumni and community members. Each issue aims to keep alumni updated on campus current events and highlights the accomplishments of current students, professors, and Westminster alum.