Yale Welcomes Six New Gymnasts

Aug. 29, 2008

NEW HAVEN, Conn. - As the freshmen descend upon Yale's campus this morning, the women's gymnastics team will soon welcome six of them to its ranks. The large incoming class is a boon to the team; the young women come from five different states and a Canadian province.

Here is an overview of the Class of 2012:

Talis Trevino is from Marietta, Georgia. A level 10, her favorite event is floor. In level 9, she won floor at State and Eastern Nationals, and was beam champion at Regionals. She was also elected to the Georgia High School Association All-State team twice.

Monica Shoji is from Cincinnati, Ohio, and has competed at the international elite level since 2004. At the 2005 US Classic, she won floor and placed second in the all-around. She was fourth in the all-around at the US Nationals in 2005.

Mia Yabut is a level 10 from Nashville, Tennessee. Having several bars titles under her belt at the State and Regional level, she is sure to add her talent to this event's line-up, as well as several others.

"I chose Yale because I fell in love with the team, and I quickly saw them as amazing role models," she said. "Yale has amazing opportunities for premedical research, especially in neuroscience and neurobiology, which is what I plan to study." Yabut's father did his medical residency at Yale.

Hailing from Kaneohe, Hawaii, Courtney Fukuda adds a multicultural flair to the team. She was born in Tokyo, studied abroad in Beijing during her junior year of high school, and speaks both Japanese and Mandarin Chinese. "Yale's global outlook and diverse student body is what intrigued me most about this university," she said. She is interested in economics and international studies.

When Fukuda returned from her year abroad, she competed as a level 10 bars and beam specialist. Beam is her favorite event, and she holds titles in the event at both the State and Regional levels.

Margaret Greenberg joins the team as a level 10 from Houston, Texas. Her strengths lie in vault and bars, in which she has made the podium quite frequently. At level 9 Regionals, she placed third in the all-around and second in both vault and bars. At Western Nationals, she placed eleventh on vault and tenth on bars.

"I firmly believe Yale provides the best undergraduate experience in the world," she said. This is a view shared by her parents, who are both Yale grads. Her mother, Claire, was the coxswain for Yale Women's Crew from 1981-1984. Her father, Joe, was in the class of 1983.

From Mississauga, Ontario, Claude De Jocas is the team's only international recruit this year. She joins junior Allison Mak, who is from the same province. As an Open 10 level competitor, she placed second in the all-around and vault, and third on beam at the Eastern Canadian Championships. She also qualified to the Elite Canada competition. Her favorite event is bars.

De Jocas fell in love with Yale during her recruiting trip. "After experiencing firsthand Yale's beauty, residential college system, and close-knit gymnastics team, I knew without a doubt this is where I wanted to spend the next four years," she said. De Jocas is interested in economics and environmental studies.

The gymnastics team is tentatively scheduled to open their season on Jan. 10, 2009.

Report filed by Cathy Jan `09, Yale Sports Publicity

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