Just Keep Swimming: Brittany Pease

– Kailin Regutti (Defiance, OH)

For many students, leaving behind a sport they love is difficult and painful. After years of doing something you love, retiring the jersey or throwing the towel in is not always an easy option. That is why joining a sports team at a D-III college is a great way for students to still participate in a sport they love.

D-III athletes can focus both on academics and still stay active by joining a team they have a passion for. Many students who attend Defiance College belong to the Jacket Nation Athletic community.

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Playing sports at a D-III level allows for students to participate for four more years in activity that they love. Each year, students look forward to a new year of participating in the collegiate sport. No student ever expects to abruptly stop participating in their sport.

Last spring, Brittany Pease, now a senior, received the news that the Swim Program had been removed from the sports offered at the college due to budget cuts. After receiving the news, Brittany was devastated. All of her hard work had gone to waste. The last three years of dedication, hard work and time commitment she had devoted to the program was now worth nothing. That is what she felt at first.

Senior Brittany Pease reflects on her swim career that was cut short at Defiance College.
Senior Brittany Pease reflects on her swim career that was cut short at Defiance College.

Brittany started competitively swimming at the age of nine for a swim club in Columbus. She continued swimming as she got older and swam throughout high school and her first three years of college. Swimming has played a large role in her life. It has taught her many life lessons such as resilience, what it means to work hard, and how make the best out of every situation. Swimming to her was more than a sport, it was her passion.

Even though her sport was unexpectedly cut from the college, she did not plan on throwing the goggles and towel in just yet. Brittany used the cutting of the team as a positive motivation in her life. She took away the important lessons that she had learned from prior swim practices, meets, coaches and teammates.

Brittany has since then volunteered to teach swim lessons at the local YMCA. Even though she cannot competitively swim, she can use her knowledge and skills to stay involved within the sports team. Someday, Brittany hopes to coach a swim team.

Brittany has advice for anyone whose sport gets cut or after they graduate college and can no longer compete. She says, “Even though competing in a sport and on a sports team is over, it’s just the beginning. Use those lessons you learned through the activity and apply them to your everyday life. Give back to others as the sport has given to you. Go out there and get involved. It never has to be truly over. And as Dory says, ‘Just Keep Swimming.’”

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