1. Why did you choose Shippensburg?
I chose Shippensburg because I really liked the school and the swim program. The school is really different from the other schools I was looking at going to. It’s smaller, but the environment is really friendly. Overall, I just felt like I could see myself spending the next four years there.
2. Have you visited there before? If you have, what was your favorite part?
I spent a few days there over a four day weekend as part of a recruiting trip. Being able to get to know the team helped me make my decision, really. Spending Friday night watching movies and playing board games with the team had to be my favorite part. I loved getting the chance to see the school, but in the end, I knew those girls might be my teammates one day, and I wanted to make sure they were the team I wanted to be on. A brief tour of the school was all I needed to know that’s where I wanted to go, and the weekend with the team only solidified my decision.
3. How did your coaches and family members react?
My parents weren’t happy. They wanted me to go to Mason, since it’s close to home and I could swim for them. I sat down with the coach from Mason and talked to him for nearly two hours about their program. Less than a week later, I went to Shippensburg for my visit, and I just liked it a lot more. It took me over two months to convince my parents that Shippensburg was the right place for me.
My coach, on the other hand, was ecstatic. For as long as we’ve been working together, I’ve said I wanted to swim in college, and for several years that didn’t look like it was going to happen. I just wasn’t fast enough to go to the schools I wanted to go to. He was actually the one who encouraged me to look at Division II schools since I might find a better fit there. Sure enough, I did a little research and contacted the coach at Shippensburg. He was delighted with the possibility of me swimming for them and started emailing both and and my coach. He was really glad I found a place I loved so much, since I had come back from all my other visits unsatisfied. We’ve been working towards this for the last five years. I think he was happy to see me accomplish everything I set out to do as a member of his club.
4. Were you planning on going to Shippensburg?
For the longest time, I had it in my head that I would swim Division I. I applied to six DI schools and went on visits to UNCW and ODU. And while I loved UNCW, they only wanted to take five or six freshmen and I was definitely not at the top of their list. ODU I could have swam for, but something just didn’t feel right. I could’ve gone there and probably would have enjoyed it, but it’s also possible I would have hated it. Of the other schools I applied to, I could have swam for two of them: Bryant, a small school in Rhode Island that I really didn’t want to go to, and Mason which was too close to home for my liking. I’m glad I found Shippensburg. As soon as I got home from my visit, I knew it was where I wanted to be and that any other school just wouldn’t make me happy.
5. Any scholarships?
I’m getting a scholarship to swim, approximately $2400, which is roughly half of their available scholarship money. I’m also getting a TAP waver, which takes a few thousand off my tuition and a $1000 in academic money.
6. What are looking forward to most about college life?
I’m looking forward to being part of the swim team and the honors program. Shipensburg’s honors program only admits fifty students each ear. The classes are small and I’m hoping that the environment will allow me to learn more than I would in a normal class. In all, I’m just looking forward to being in a new school with new people and a new team and using it as an opportunity to grow as a person.