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Division III Week Student-Athlete Spotlight: In My Own Words by Alexandra Polivanchuk

Division III Week Student-Athlete Spotlight: In My Own Words by Alexandra Polivanchuk

WASHINGTON – Gallaudet University athletics is proud to participate in the third annual NCAA Division III Week (April 7-13) in an effort to celebrate the impact athletics and Bison student-athletes have on our campus and surrounding community. GU is joining nearly 450 Division III institutions and 43 conferences in this week's celebration.

To help focus on the many student-athletes that represent Gallaudet athletics we will spotlight a different student-athlete each day this week. You will learn more about them as they express their feelings on what it is like to be a Division III student-athlete here at Gallaudet.

Junior Alexandra Polivanchuk (Orebro, Sweden) is a member of the Gallaudet women's swimming and diving team and is on track to graduate in May of 2015.

In My Own Words: Alexandra Polivanchuk

What is it like to be a student-athlete in college?
AP: Being a student-athlete at Gallaudet University is an amazing opportunity, especially, since I was chosen to be swim captain on the swim team. It has been a rich experience being a student and an athlete, it is more than I could imagine myself before I attended Gallaudet University. 

What is it like to be a student at Gallaudet University?
AP: I have to say that I am very grateful for the choices I made before I decided to become a undergraduate. Having a sign language environment at a University is not something that we see everyday based on my experience in Sweden. Before I came to Gallaudet, I actually didn't plan to stay more than one year. Through new experiences I was able to grow as a person in many good ways, so I decided to continue with my education in International Studies because I really love being a student here. This is where the deaf community is and it is filled with a lot of opportunities that are definitely the best for me and my future.

You are an international student from Orebro, Sweden. Explain your experience here at Gallaudet and being in the United States. Also, how has things changed with your sister, Anna, joining you here this year and what did it mean to have her on the swim team with you? How did that push you to greatness this past season?
AP: Like I said, it has been an incredible journey for me since my first day being a student here in the United States. To be on the GU swim team where everyone uses sign language made the whole thing even better then I could imagine. Recently, my sister came to Gallaudet and joined me on the swim team. I was more than happy to have her on the swim team, we have been swimming together since we were nine years old. So, it felt extra good to swim with her once again after three years. We always have that kind of bond to support each other every swim meet and she helped me to not think about my shoulder injury during all swim meets this semester. From there I could swim without any pains, it's pretty unbelievable how the support could make a difference especially from my twin sister. 

Division III Week Fact of the Day

Did you know more than 183,000 men and women participate in Division III athletics