Rodriguez works nights, balances school, work, wrestling

by Rosalie Chan, Web Editor

David Rodriguez, senior, wakes up at dawn to go to work, yet he manages to balance working the night shift with school and his participation in varsity wrestling.
Rodriguez first started working at 5 Aces Delivery in the summer, but now during the school year, he works the night shift between 2 a.m. and 6 a.m..  He works there for an average of three hours, and he delivers Chicago Tribune newspapers.
“I started working there because my mom worked there,” Rodriguez said.  “The first week was kind of tough. After the first week I got used to it because it’s my schedule…I’ve worked there before but not really at night and never during school.”
In order to wake up early for work, Rodriguez goes to sleep at around 8 p.m. or 9 p.m.
“I take sacrifices,” Rodriguez said.  “I go to sleep early, and I try to conserve my energy so I can get enough for throughout my week.  During school, I feel tired in the morning because I take a nap sometimes before school after work.”
Eric Kaplan, junior, worked with Rodriguez over the summer at 5 Aces Delivery.
“(The hardest part is) waking up early so you can do stuff the next day,” Kaplan said.
According to Rodriguez, he becomes more tired in the afternoon.  However, Tim McIntire, science teacher, said he felt “impressed” that Rodriguez can balance school, work and sports.
“When I met him, he told me he had a night shift job he would work a few days a week,” Mr. McIntire said.  “He’s got some days where he’s more tired, but he’s able to do the work in class.”
Although Rodriguez said he often feels tired due to his work and sleep schedule, he feels more active after physical education, and he also dedicates time to wrestling.
“David actually supports himself and helps support his family.  The fact that he’s having a successful wrestling season, I respect him for that,” Neil Weiner, wrestling coach, said.  “When you’re on a sports team, you have a family.  In such a competitive sport, coaches and members become very close.  It draws everyone together because of the training.”
Rodriguez has participated in wrestling since freshman year.  Recently, Rodriguez placed second at the Wildcat Invitational on Dec. 8.
“He’ll be successful because of the adversity he had in his life.  He’s overcome a lot,” Coach Weiner said.  “The fact that he’s successful in school, work and life, he will be successful as an adult.”