University of Toledo women’s soccer head coach TJ Buchholz announced that 2001 graduate Marisa Baysa is the recipient of the inaugural Toledo Soccer Alumnae Spotlight Award.
This award was created by the Toledo Soccer board to spotlight one alumna each year who is making a difference after their time at UToledo.
“I’m honored by this recognition and for the opportunity to bring visibility to our mission,” Baysa said. “Soccer is a sport that unites the world. It gave me an opportunity to earn an education, travel, establish lifelong friendships and the ability to connect when language is a barrier.”
The Oak Harbor, Wash., native donned the Rockets uniform from 1996-2001. A four-time letter winner, her greatest memories at UToledo were the ones filled with uncontrollable laughter or tears in the time of pre-social media and the digital age. Baysa graduated with a bachelor’s degree in industrial engineering and a minor in business administration.
Baysa is a board member for Tacos4Ticos, a foundation supported by local soccer clubs and local businesses throughout the U.S. Donations of gently used cleats, shin guards, goalie gloves, uniforms, pinnies and cones are hand-delivered as checked luggage by friends of Tacos4Ticos to kids in underserved communities throughout Costa Rica.
As one of the founders and current board members, Baysa networks, provides guidance to ensure the mission is fully supported, maintains the website and helps coordinate donation logistics.
“To be able to give back and provide opportunities to others is quite the blessing and an honor,” Baysa said.