November 2017

Issue link: http://catalog.e-digitaleditions.com/i/896242

Contents of this Issue


Page 120 of 120

121 the struggle. e essential thing is not to have conquered, but to have fought well." Rafferty recovered and placed 35th in the three- meter and 44th in the one-meter diving events at the 2016 Big Ten Championships. When describing her time with Coach for College, Rafferty said, "It's a good thing smiling is universal." "ese kids don't have much, yet they showed up to class every day so grateful to be there," Rafferty said. "ey taught me the pure joy of life." Rafferty is a mathematics major with specialization in statistics and actuarial science and a minor in business administration. e experience in Vietnam was powerful for DiBellonia as well. She took a five-hour bus ride from Ho Chi Minh City to a rural area where the citizens had limited exposure to Westerners. "I felt like a celebrity upon arrival," DiBellonia said. "ey were mesmerized by my curly hair." DiBellonia is majoring in international studies with a focus on global health. She taught English, dance, and life skills. "e hardest part was coming back to all of this lavish luxury," she said. "All I took was a backpack with a few clothes, my phone…the bare necessities. I came back to my room full of this stuff — all of these clothes and all of this technology. It made me realize that I don't need it all to be happy. It was amazing to see children with nothing and be so happy." In a way, the Vietnamese students provided DiBellonia with the most valuable lesson. "It made me re-evaluate what happiness is and what the value of life is," DiBellonia said. "It's not about what you have, but what you make of your life." Unique and enlightening. Two University of Iowa student-athletes shared experiences from separate three-week volunteer tours over the summer in Vietnam with the Coach for College program. Coach for College is a service learning program that brings together United States student-athletes and Vietnamese university students to teach academics, sports, and life skills at summer camps to disadvantaged children in rural Vietnam. One of the University of Iowa student-athletes is from Iowa, the other from Canada. One is a diver, the other a rower. ey both valued their unique and enlightening time abroad. Morgan Rafferty is a senior springboard diver from West Des Moines, Iowa. "e University of Iowa has given me so many incredible experiences," Rafferty said Oct. 18 at a University of Iowa Athletics Department all-staff meeting. "e most unique experience was the opportunity to teach math and coach dance to middle school students in Vietnam." Bianca DiBellonia is a senior rower from Ontario, Canada. She arrived in Vietnam a few weeks before Rafferty and called the experience enlightening. "rough everything the university has offered me, it has made me such a better person," DiBellonia said. "It has made me stronger, taught me to push through difficulties in my life in all aspects." Rafferty overcame personal adversity on the way to competing in the Big Ten Championships two seasons ago. ree weeks before the competition, she suffered a head injury. Her coach, Todd Waikel, told her to focus on the Olympic Creed: "e most important thing in the Olympic Games is not to win, but to take part. Just as the most important thing in life is not the triumph, but

Articles in this issue

view archives of HAWK TALK - November 2017