Maddy Lavoie: “Don’t Let Stereotypes Define Who You Are”

Maddy Lavoie NCAA swimming

Maddy Lavoie celebrates her first NSISC win – Contributed Photo

A definition: Strong, fast, powerful, accomplished.

Beside this in a dictionary, you could easily see a photo of Wheatley’s Maddy Lavoie.

The NCAA swimmer has a powerful message for young female athletes who might have not heard this definition with their photo beside it.

“Don’t let stereotypes define who you are,” said Lavoie, an OFSAA gold medallist and record holder.

“Do what makes you happy and do what you love. There are going to be people who doubt you, but prove them wrong. Don’t give up and don’t quit.”

The Blenheim Blast alumni, has found her home, and her sanctuary in the pool throughout most of her life.

“Swimming has been my escape for as long as I can remember,” said Lavoie. “Whenever I feel stressed or need a break, I go to the pool. I have made so many life-long friends through the sport and that is something I will always be grateful for. Swimming has also helped develop me as a person. I have learned time-management skills from balancing practices and school work. Being a student athlete takes a lot of commitment, but is definitely achievable if you put your mind to it. I have also learned the traits of determination, dedication, and perseverance. I have learned these traits through hard practices, accepting defeat in races and overcoming mental and physical barriers.”

The Delta State University swimmer is thankful for the opportunities she has had to continue competing at a higher level, and hopes other young women get the chance to achieve their dreams, as she has.

“It has been absolutely amazing being able to swim in University. After years of hard work, these are the rewards. This is what makes all the morning practices and exhausting workouts worth it. Being able to experience the rewards of all that hard work is something that is so gratifying. Putting in the work and setting goals will help you achieve your dreams. This was my dream.”

Happy International Women’s Day from the Chatham-Kent Sports Network. #InternationalWomensDay

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