Porter Announces Class of 2016
11 Rowers Headed to Yale next Fall
NEW HAVEN, Conn. - Yale Women's Crew coach Will Porter is excited to welcome 11 new rowers to New Haven next fall. This large, diverse class is filled with determined, tough young athletes. Five have participated in US Rowing JR National Team camps. As a group they posses tremendous racing experience. They have earned medals at many of the most prestigious regattas; The 2011 World Junior Rowing Championships, Women's Royal Henley, Royal Canadian Henley, The CanAmMex Regatta, US Rowing Youth National Championships, US Rowing Club National Championships, and the Head of the Charles.
Allie Banwell, Regan Considine, Martha Cosgrove, Kendall Chapin, Emma Graham, Margaret Hendren, Colleen Maher, Mimi Reichenbach, Mieke Scherpbier, Brit Sharon and Abbie Young were all accepted to Yale early and all matriculated immediately.
Here is a closer look at the Class of 2016:
Hometown: Charlotte, NC
High School: Groton School
Porter Says: "Allie is a great fit for Yale coming out of a strong Groton program where she has been well coached by Andy Anderson."
Athletic Highlights: Captain of the varsity crew team in 2011 she rowed in Groton's top four and led them to an undefeated regular season. That summer Groton rowed at the Henley Women's Regatta in England, where they won the Junior 8. Allie also earned an invitation to the 2011 US Rowing Junior team selection camp. Allie is an accomplished runner, and won her team's coaches award. She has raced in two half marathons.
Inspiration: "I am the most inspired by my team. Last summer, after we finished the regular season, our first two fours combined to make an eight to race at the Henley Women's Regatta. We had never raced in an eight before, but we worked together to make it work, and eventually won the regatta. I am so amazed that my team could unite in just a number of weeks by working so hard."
What made you choose Yale? "When I visited Yale, I immediately felt comfortable. When I came for my official visit I noticed how much people at Yale genuinely loved being there. The groups of people were so diverse, and yet everyone found a place where they could be happy. It seems to me that Yale does a great job inter-mixing people with varying interests and backgrounds to create an environment where everyone is free to be themselves."
Quote: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit." - Aristotle.
Hometown: West Hartford, CT
High School: Hall High School/ Riverfront Recapture
Porter Says: "Regan is the classic self starter. She has come so far on her own. I am excited to see what she will do at Yale."
Athletic Highlights: Riverfront Recapture Captain 2010-2012. Regan stroked the Varsity 4+ to a 20th place finish at Head of the Charles, first place in V4+ at New England High School Championships, second place in V4+ at the Head of the Riverfront. Regan earned an invitation to the 2010 USRowing Junior Development Camp and the 2011 USRowing High Performance Camp. Regan is also an accomplished Irish step dancer and a varsity swimmer.
Inspiration: "My grandfather. Through his meticulous work ethic, commitment to excellence, and loyalty to family, friends, and ideals, he has shown me by example how to succeed."
Why did you choose Yale? "I chose Yale because in the rowing program and throughout all aspects of the university, value is placed not solely on the result, but on the process as well. The coaches, students, and faculty enjoy each other and learn from the obstacles between where they are now and where they will be in the future. There is an emphasis on relationships between people and not just the product of their collaboration."
Quote: A gold medal is a wonderful thing, but if you're not enough without it, you'll never be enough with it." ---John Candy, Cool Runnings
Hometown: Radnor, NJ
High School: Radnor High School
Porter Says: "Kendall has stroked and done well in many big races. That experience will serve her well as she transitions to Yale."
Athletic Highlights: Kendall has been the stroke of the Radnor varsity eight for the last two years. In 2010 her boat finished third at the Stotesbury Cup Regatta. In 2011 her boat returned to the regatta and took gold. She has earned three consecutive silver medals at SRAA Nationals (2009 – Freshman 8, 2010 and 2011 – Varsity 8). Kendall is currently the captain of the 2011-2012 Radnor Girls Crew Team
Inspiration: "Both of my parents, for teaching me to never shy away from my dreams."
Why did you choose Yale? "Yale's ability to provide both an outstanding academic and athletic environment that will constantly challenge me to achieve more, as well as its strong sense of community and tradition, were exactly what I was looking for in a school."
Quote: "The inches we need are everywhere around us. They're in every break of the game, every minute, every second. In any fight, it's the guy who's willing to die who's gonna win that inch." –Al Pacino, "Peace by Inches" Any Given Sunday
Hometown: Winchester, MA
High School: Winchester HS/ Community Rowing Inc.
Porter Says: "Martha is a great fit for Yale. Coming out of CRI and training under Ethan Curren I know she will be ready to go when she gets here. She is a racer that's for sure. "
Athletic Highlights: Martha has been a member of the CRI varsity boat for the past three years. Martha has won several national titles. In 2011, her varsity eight earned the right to represent the US at the CanAmMex Regatta in Welland, Ontario, after winning the Jr. 8 championship at the US Rowing Club National Championships. She won both the 8+ and the 4+ at the regatta. In 2011 and 2010 she won the 8+ at the Royal Canadian Henley, in 2011 she also won gold in the 4+. Martha was also a member of the 2010 varsity eight that won the youth eight event at the Head of the Charles.
Inspiration: "I am inspired by my teammates. I know that might sound cliche, but I truly am. I work hard at practice everyday as I row or erg beside my closest friends - pulling for them, because I know they're pulling for me. I also look up to Kristin Hedstrom (current US National team member), who was once part of my club team before I was there. She comes back to visit us, and even though it's only on occasion, her small frame gives way to a dominating and powerful figure. To me, she demonstrates hard work at its finest."
Why did you choose Yale? "I chose Yale primarily on the strength of the people I met there. The students were relaxed yet purposeful and I found the same in the professors. When I walked on campus, I had that magical 'feeling' that everyone talks about, yet can never describe."
Quote: My coach always tells us...."Winning is not normal. I would like to think that we, as a team, are not normal."
Hometown: Medfield, MA
High School: Southfield School
Porter Says: "Margaret understands what our program is all about. She fits well with what we are doing on every level."
Athletic Highlights: Margaret has been a member of Southfield's varsity crew team since her freshman year, and has served as captain of the squad since 2010. She received the Coach's Award in 2010 and was named the MVP in 2011. In the summer of 2011 she raced with Boston Rowing Club and finished third in the U19 quad at the Royal Canadian Henley. Margaret is also a member of the Southfield varsity swim team.
Inspiration: "Heather Altschuler, a former coach and teacher at my school who rowed for Canada at the 2008 Olympics. Her intelligence, kind spirit and work ethic, made her a role model and inspiration for me not only in rowing, but also in all aspects of life."
Why did you choose Yale? "Yale appeals to every part of me and truly resonates with all of my values and interests and senses (academic, personal, aesthetic, community, etc.). I was fortunate enough to see and be invited to a number of great schools/programs. However, in a few words, Yale was the only one that just felt like it was made for me!"
Quote: "Just Do It" – Nike or "Never stop moving!"--- Boston Rowing Club Motto
Hometown: Oakton, VA
High School: Thomas Jefferson High School
Porter Says: "Colleen is very ready for the next step. I expect she will do very well at Yale. She is a hard worker with great determination."
Athletic Highlights: Colleen has rowed in the Thomas Jefferson Varsity 8+ for four years. She is currently the team captain. In 2011 her varsity 8+ placed 3rd at the Virginia State Championship. Colleen earned an invitation to the 2011 US Rowing Junior Selection Camp. She rowed and raced in Germany with the US High Performance Team.
Inspiration: "My brother (Nolan Maher, Yale 2010) has always been my inspiration, especially in rowing. He showed me the level of work and effort required to become a successful rower. I'm not sure if I would have ever discovered rowing on my own, without his example. I would have missed out on something that I truly love, so I will always be grateful to him for introducing me to the sport."
Why did you choose Yale? "I chose Yale primarily because it offers one of the best combinations of excellent academics and fast rowing. I loved the feel of New Haven, and the students are incredibly diverse in their interests and activities."
Quote: "If you focus on results, you will never change. If you focus on change, you will get results." - Jack Dixon.
Hometown: Newton, MA
High School: Phillips Exeter Academy
Porter Says: "I can tell already that Mimi will be a great teammate. She has an energy about her that is contagious. She truly enjoys the work."
Athletic Highlights: Mimi has been a member of the Exeter varsity boat since her sophomore year. In 2011 Mimi sat seven seat in the NEIRA winning varsity eight, this boat went on to finish fourth at the US Rowing Youth National Championships. She also earned an invitation to the US Rowing Junior National Team High Performance Camp. Mimi is a three sport varsity athlete at Exeter. She also captains the field hockey squad and plays on the ice hockey team.
Inspiration: "My inspiration is Michelle Guerette, who coached at a sculling camp I went to in 2010. She won the silver medal in the women's single scull event at the 2008 Olympics. She is such a successful rower because she trains hard everyday, is extremely aggressive, and has an amazing ability to focus and push herself when she is on her own in a boat. Yet off the water, she can joke around and doesn't take herself too seriously."
Why did you choose Yale? "Because of its combination of excellent academics, athletics and school vibe. Yale's academics are some of the best in the nation, and Yale Women's Crew is a continuously successful team with incredible athletes and coaching. After sitting in on Yale classes, meeting students, watching practice- and tasting the dining hall's macaroni and cheese- I knew it was definitely where I wanted to be."
Quote: "Be the athlete you'd be terrified to face on the starting line."- Christine Devlin
Hometown: Newton, MA
High School: Newton South High School/ Community Rowing Inc.
Porter Says: "Brit is all upside. She is brand new to the sport but already moving right up the ladder. Again, coming out of CRI I know coach Curren will have her ready to race it up."
Athletic Highlights: Brit only started rowing a year ago, but has already racked up some impressive performances. She stroked her four to a silver medal at the US Rowing Club National Championships. She rowed in the CRI varsity that finished 4th at the 2011 Head of the Charles Regatta.
Inspiration: "My inspirations are teammates that I have had that were older and more experienced than I was. I always would watch the girls on my crew team that I looked up to so much, and see them do amazing things. Watching them helped me push myself to do better, both on and off the water."
Why did you choose Yale? "Yale was always my first choice. I had been looking into a few schools at first: I wanted to go to one of the best schools in the country academically, so that was one factor I considered. However, when I came to visit the campus on a cold and rainy weekend I loved it. The people seemed so happy, and more importantly, connected to one another and to the school. I knew that if I could fall in love with a school in such miserable weather, then it can only be better in the sunshine. I cancelled all of my other visits to different schools because I knew that I had to come to Yale."
Quote: "There is nothing that your body would not be able to do if only your mind would let it."
Hometown: Upper Dublin, PA
High School: Upper Dublin High School
Porter Says: "Mieke is a multi-sport athlete who knows how to train and race. I look forward to seeing her develop as a rower at Yale."
Athletic Highlights: Mieke is a talented swimmer, who only started rowing a year ago. Both her parents rowed in the Netherlands and her brother currently competes for Dartmouth. In 2011 Mieke's High School won the Division Swim championship for the first time in school history. Mieke won the 2011 SRAA National Championships in the JV Double, she is the first ever SRAA Champion for her boat club, Bachelor's Barge Club. She finished 4th at the Royal Canadian Henley in the U19 quad.
Inspiration: "My inspiration is my double partner Megan Rudkin. She keeps me going during swimming, rowing and just on a day to day basis."
Why did you choose Yale? "I chose Yale for the unmatched engineering department along with the incredible rowing program."
Quote: My swim coach, Brian Palme, always says to "get comfortable with being uncomfortable".
Hometown: Barnstable, MA
High School: Phillips Exeter Academy
Porter Says: "Abbie is an intense athlete who will thrive in our program. Her high octane, no nonsense personality and inner drive will fit in well with our program."
Athletic Highlights: Abbie is one the nation's top young rowers. In 2011 she rowed in the Exeter varsity eight that went undefeated during the regular season, and won the NEIRA championship, before going on to finish 4th at the US Rowing Youth National Championships. Abbie stroked the 2011 US Women's Junior 8 that won bronze at the Junior World Rowing Championships in Amsterdam. In 2010, while rowing with Phoenix Racing she won both Scholastic Nationals and Stotesbury Cup in the 2x.
Inspiration: "My teammates are always my biggest inspiration. Seeing how hard they fight and how willing they are to push themselves motivates me to be the best I can be. I always want to do whatever I can to prove to them that I am equally willing to go as far as they are so we can go as fast as possible. I have always believed that the friendships forged with my teammates are more similar to unbreakable bonds or sisterhood than to an ordinary friendship. It is those bonds, as well as the people with whom I share them, in which I find the most strength.
Why did you choose Yale? "I knew Yale was where I wanted to be before I even visited the campus. Yale's academic reputation caught my attention several years ago. I was even more enraptured when I took my official and fell in love with Yale's historic architecture, variety of classes, and the fantastic welcome that the team and other students offered me when I was there. That experience also reassured me that Yale can offer me everything that I'm looking for in a university. I am ecstatic to be a part of its perfect balance of academic rigor and opportunities and athletic expectations and success. Early on, I was sure that this balance and the lessons I will learn from its aspects, both individually and together, will prepare me for any path I may choose to follow in life."
Quote: "It's not the size of the dog in the fight, it's the size of the fight in the dog." Mark Twain.
Hometown: Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
Porter Says: "Emma is a great fit for Yale. She is intellectually curious and athletically driven."
Athletic Highlights: Emma is an experienced rower from Canada. Her accolades include; 3rd Place in the Jr Women's Eight at the 2010 RowOntario Regatta, 3rd Place in Varsity Novice Womens Eight at Head of the Fish 2010, 1st Place in the Varsity Quad and Varsity Eight at the Ottawa High School Regatta 2011.
Inspiration: "My mom defines the concept of unconditional love and support, as she inspires me everyday to be the best version of myself."
Why did you choose Yale? I chose Yale for its sense of community, renowned rowing program and superb Science Department.
Motivational Quote: "We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, therefore, is not an act but a habit." – Aristotle