15 Students And Alumni To Watch At Sochi

For some 2014 Olympians, Sochi is just a break from school.

1. Aidan Kelly from National Sports Academy (luge)

The 19-year-old moved to Lake Placid, N.Y., when he was 15 to pursue luge racing. There, he graduated from the National Sports Academy, which is a training center for winter sports athletes.

2. Hannah Kearney from Dartmouth College (mogul skiing)

Kearney, a Hanover High School alum, considers herself “half-Canadian” because her mother grew up in Montreal. On starting college in 2013: “I’m a 27-year-old freshman and returning to college after a seven-year break from high school was by far the hardest thing I’ve ever done in my life.” Even harder than moguls!

3. Jared Zezel from Bemidji State University (curling)

The senior from Bemidji State in Minnesota took a semester off to focus on the Olympics.

4. Gracie Gold from Glenwood High School (women’s figure skating)

In 2010, a then 14-year-old Gold told the State-Journal Register in Illinois: “I would really like to be, or at least considered, for the 2014 Olympic team.” Done and done. Not only did she qualify, but she won Nationals.

5. Caitlin Cahow from Boston College (women’s ice hockey)

She’s not playing this time, but she will be representing the United States as a delegate at the closing ceremony. The White House staff called her with the honor while she was studying for an exam at law school.

6. Evan Bates, Meryl Davis, Alex Shibutani, Maia Shibutani, and Charlie White from the University of Michigan (ice dancing)

Is there something in the water in Ann Arbor? Five of the six Team USA ice dancers are from the University of Michigan.

7. Maddie Bowman from Westminster College - Utah (freeskiing)

Her major may be undeclared, but there’s nothing uncertain about her Olympic prospects. She and 11 other Westminster students will be representing the U.S. in various skiing events in Sochi.

8. Ryan Miller from Michigan State University (men’s ice hockey)

He’s the starting goaltender for the United States men’s ice hockey team, and once set an NCAA record at Michigan State with 26 career shutouts.

9. Jason Brown from Highland Park High School (men’s figure skating)

A smarty pants that skates like a dream. At Highland Park High School, Brown received the Ralph Potter Memorial Award for Exceptional Ability and Achievement.

10. Shani Davis from Marquette Senior High School (speed skating)

The first pair of skates Davis ever picked up? A pair of Rollerblades when he was two. At 16, he moved to Marquette, Mich., for Olympic training, and at Marquette Senior High School, he ran track his senior year.

11. Lanny Barnes from Colorado Mesa University (biathlon)

Along with her sister Tracy, this CMU alum is one half of the “Twin Biathletes.” Although Lanny was unable to compete in the Olympic trials in Italy, Tracy gave up her spot on the U.S. team so that her sis could compete in Sochi. Talk about sisterly love!

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