Meghan O’Leary (M.Ed. ’08 Soc Fdns) never joined the rowing team while she was a student-athlete at the University of Virginia from 2003 to 2008. She traded softballs for oars on a whim a couple of years after graduating. Now she’s a winner on the water and a 2016 Olympic hopeful in the women’s double sculls.
O’Leary was honored for National Girls and Women in Sports Day at the Cavalier women’s basketball game on Jan. 25, 2015.
A two-sport student athlete at U.Va., O’Leary played volleyball in 2003 and ’04 and softball from 2005 to ’08. A softball team captain in her final year, she was a Jefferson Scholar and a double major in religious studies and sociology. She was a five-time member of the Atlantic Coast Conference Academic Honor Roll….
Following graduation, O’Leary was a full-time staff member in production and programming for ESPN.
In 2010, her career took a dramatic turn after she picked up an oar for the first time and discovered she loved rowing. By 2011, she joined the USRowing National Training Center in Princeton, N.J.; she earned a spot on two U.S. senior national teams in 2013 and is an Olympic hopeful for 2016. O’Leary was named the female athlete representative on the USRowing Board of Directors last year.
With teammate Ellen Tomek, O’Leary has represented the U.S. at the last two World Rowing Championships in the women’s double sculls, winning a silver medal in France. They live in Oklahoma City and often train at the Princeton rowing center.
Read the rest of this story in UVA Today: “U.Va. Alumna Meghan O’Leary To Be Honored for Athletic Excellence” by Melissa Dudek.
Check out Meghan’s blog: meghanoleary.net/