Blog Post #11: Passing the Torch

Hello to Club Swim, current and previous members, parents, alum, and all of our readers! Kimmy here! (A forewarning that this is going to be long, so sorry!)

I wasn’t sure how to start this blog post, so I’ll start off with our swim meet from this past weekend.

**drumroll**

We had Ivies!!!! Everyone did incredible, and we all had so much fun – both in the water, at the poolside cheering, and of course at the afterparty while socializing with the other club swim teams!

I want to give a shoutout to all of the current leadership that made Ivies happen, and to all of the drivers. And in particular, I want to give a few special shoutouts to Michael Sun (our new but already veteran head coach), Max Orman-Kollmar (master of the Airbnb situation and also my adopted little brother), Che Esch (my shuttling-people buddy and also mental support during the car rides), and Libby Decker (for our amazing suits and driving everyone)!

It’s honestly bittersweet and a little surreal, being in my senior spring, no longer being head coach or on “relevant leadership” (as Michael may say), and having finished my last meet of my college career (if I can call it that, haha).

I think all of the seniors on Saturday were thinking the same thing. We couldn’t believe we were done, even as we took a photo together commemorating the completion of our last Ivies. There were some tears, lots of hugging, and just overall disbelief. We’re all heading off to different places, and already currently are doing completely different things on campus – but Club Swim was where our friendships started.

I can feel the tears welling up a bit as I type this, mind and heart racing as well. Part of it is from a quiet sadness. Most people vaguely know that I have been head coach for Club Swim for a long time, particularly due to the close relationship that I have with our supervisors Heather and Joann. I think fewer know that I have been the coach since the end of my freshman year/my sophomore fall.

In my 4 years here, I have been involved with so many things on this campus, both academic and extracurricular. But throughout my entire college career, Club Swim has always meant the most to me. Even on days when I was about to cry from frustration, getting to the pool and seeing my team, coaching, and working with members somehow has always made me feel better. …Well except maybe on the day that Matt and Khoa whacked a bouncy ball towards my face. 😀

Perhaps it was the feeling of having a community to come back to, perhaps it was the smiles on members’ faces when they saw me and said hello – or perhaps it was seeing the emotions of delight and satisfaction when there was improvement for a team member. Perhaps it’s the fact that some of my craziest stories and lifetime’s closest friendships have come from Club Swim, and I trust these friends with all of my heart. I don’t think I’ll ever really be able to pinpoint the reason, but I do know that I will never forget this warm feeling of belonging.

People always tell me “Club Swim can’t do without you,” but I think, at least for the first few months after graduating, I won’t be able to do without Club Swim. Mixed amongst the sad tears are tears of pride and joy, because I am 120% sure that we are leaving the team in capable hands. I couldn’t be more excited about what Michael and the rest of leadership have planned for coming years. (And yes, I will be trying to visit next year when I can.)

Love and hugs to you all! Hopefully I don’t cry at end-of-season banquet…

Signing off officially as leadership,

Kimmy Ma

Swimmer of the Week! #14

Welcome back to 18S! The first SOTW this term is our vice president and Zumba leader, Che! He’s a smiling and gentle presence on our team, is the only person (besides Kimmy) willing to swim 500s, and you can always catch him eating Hop burger specials. Read on to get to know a little more about him!

Name: Che Esch

Continue reading

Blog Post #10: O Captain! My Captain!

Hi team! This blog post is from our newly retired team captain Khoa Tran! It’s breaking away from the pattern thus far of full on prose, but enjoy! (He wrote this about something else; I promise it’s not implying anything about Club Swim!!!!)


Voyage into the Smoke

I stand here watching my daydreams,
Drain from my quartet around me,
My wooden neck and casting away my wings.
I thought I could fly and talk to God,
But God had determined me too small.
Or perhaps too large to march among the sky,
Leaving me to cry along with the clouds.
But even now, I don’t belong in the clouds
As they cast me out from heaven.

Continue reading

Blog Post #9: from the retired social chair!

Hi Club Swim!

It’s me, your favorite retired social chair! For those of you who don’t know me, I’m Campbell, I’m an ’18, and I’ve been part of club swim since the first week of my freshman fall. It’s hard to believe I only have one more quarter left as an official member (but don’t worry, I’ll still be lurking in the groupme long after I’ve graduated), and as week 9 is wrapping up the nostalgia is definitely hitting hard. So join me as I procrastinate studying for finals with a trip down club swim memory lane! Continue reading

Blog Post #8: MEET Me at the Pool!

Hi Club Swim! Get excited because it’s finally meet week!! Last year was our very first home meet ever, and we’re back at it again this weekend! This year, Brown and UVM are coming up to swim against us, and of course, we’ll have pizza after! (I’m kind of excited for the swimming, really excited for the pizza.)

This term has been a little different for me because I’m off but still on campus doing research. A lot of my fellow ‘19s are off campus (shout out to Sarah for coming up from DC three times this term though), but I’m keeping myself busy by doing a little more on club swim—I’m social chair (even though Campbell still does a lot of the work, thanks Campbell), and I was in charge of the gear. But one thing hasn’t changed for me this term, and it’s how pumped I am for our meets.

Meet weekends are always my favorites of the term because I get to spend so much time hanging out with club swim. I really love away meets because we get to spend two hours in the car both ways jamming out to the playlist Sarah and I made our freshman year (shameless plug for Club Swim 15F on Spotify – still the reigning and undisputed best playlist of club swim) and telling secrets. The first club swim meet I went to freshman fall was definitely a huge part of why I stuck with the team and have come to love it so much. Continue reading

Swimmer of the Week! #13

HAPPY (belated) BIRTHDAY to our newly crowned club president! To commemorate the lovely Rachel Martin‘s 21st birthday… we present to you all… her swimmer of the week spotlight! (hahaha) Rachel has been a consistent and reliable member of Club Swim since her first term on the team, and we’re so happy that she will be helping to lead the club this coming year!

Name: Rachel Martin

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Blog Post #7: It’s Always Sunny in Phoenix

Hello loyal followers of Dartmouth Club Swim! I’m Libby, I’m a ’20, and new to leadership. For some reason, it seems like everyone is off this term. Why, you might ask. Well, Hanover winters are known to be a little chilly at times, like your hair freezes after practice kind of chilly, so many of us take the opportunity to get out of town, go on a foreign study program, do an internship or research. And though we may not feel like we’re missing out on the blizzards for dayz, the FOMO on Club Swim is

Winnie, my brother’s dog!!

real.  Continue reading

Blog Post #6: Searching for Burgers in a Strange Land

Hi everyone, Che here. In perusing the previous entries on our blog this winter for ~inspiration (read: ideas to steal for myself), I noticed that a lot of what we’ve offered up has been our experiences away from (/coming back to) campus, and more importantly, away from Club Swim. Perhaps, dear reader, you’ve been pining for an inside look at what 18W has been like for club swim – the day to day grind in the pool; meetings in smoke-filled rooms planning for our next incredibly successful social event (come thru); how Kimmy, Michael and the rest of our heroic leadership team possibly manage to balance studies with keeping our crazy group afloat.

If so, you’ll have to wait until next week. I, too, have been away, on a study abroad in France.  It’s much warmer here than in Hanover – think single-digits Celsius in stead of Fahrenheit – but winter is winter, and the best part of my winter at Dartmouth has always been Club Swim. Continue reading

Blog Post #5: Are You There, Friends? It’s me, Sarah

Are You There, Friends? It’s me, Sarah

(Alternate titles: “Everyone IS Hanging Out Without Me!” or “Seeking a Friend For the End of the Term”)

HI Club Swim and greetings from DC! I’m currently sitting at my desk in my lab on my lunch break (10:50 AM), and I mean it when I say I miss you. Although the leftover pizza I am eating is far more delicious than yet another New England salad from KAF, I miss our grim FFB lunches from last term. Sharing the grim with Thuy-Vy, Jacob, Kimmy, Rachel, Khoa or Nan always made the salad taste much better.

Right now, I feel like I’m in a second adolescence — that is to say, awkward. My dad calls my lifestyle “adulting junior” because although I am living at home, I am faced with adult lifestyle tasks such as commuting, cooking for myself, and making friends in the real world. The first two are going great–I can make fish like nobody’s business, and the buffalo chicken soup I made for my brother’s high school teachers was deemed the best of the selection (suck it, other PTA moms!). The Metro has proven to have excellent people watching — for instance, today I saw a grown-ass man reading a book called The Greatness Guide…in public! One day I hope to have that sort of humility.  Continue reading

Blog Post #4

On Coming Home

After two months in London, I finally went swimming at the London Aquatics Centre just a five-minute walk from my dorm. Walking into the 2012 Olympic pool was incredibly…familiar. Continue reading

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