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Sochi Bound

February 04, 2014
Provided by the Westminster (Utah) Communications Department

SALT LAKE CITY – Westminster College (Utah) congratulates 23 students as they prepare to compete in Russia next week – the most of any traditional college/university in the country. The college will be cheering on these exceptional student athletes as they represent the U.S. in events from snowboarding to ski jumping.

Westminster sophomore, Jessica Jerome, will compete with the first-ever U.S. women’s ski jumping team. Between pursuing the historic fight for inclusion in the Winter Games and balancing her rigorous training schedule, Jerome was able to incorporate Westminster classes into her hectic schedule. Understanding the importance of getting an education, she didn’t want to put school on the back burner.

“My dad was always very adamant that I could make ski jumping a priority, but I didn’t have to sacrifice my education completely,” said Jerome. “I love that when I do decide to quit skiing, I’m not going to have to start from nothing.”

Just as Jerome and Team U.S.A. head to Russia, Westminster and the U.S. Ski and Snowboard Association (USSA) celebrate the renewal of a partnership that offers tuition remission to qualifying USSA athletes. Since the program started in 2005, more than 100 U.S. Ski and Snowboard Team members have attended Westminster. Nordic combined athlete Taylor Fletcher says the program has made him a better competitor.

“It allows me to take my mind off of skiing and train a different side of the brain for a while,” said Fletcher, who is a freshman at Westminster. “When I come to skiing, I’m much more relaxed, much more focused, and I’m a little bit sharper with my everyday thoughts.”

“Our USSA students excel in the classroom just as they do on the slopes, with an average G.P.A of 3.56,”said Dr. Brian Levin-Stankevich, president of Westminster College. “Faculty and staff understand the dedication it takes to compete at this level and work closely with these students to help them achieve their goals.”

During the games, Westminster will closely follow the progress of its athletes. Athlete bios and results will be updated at www.westminstercollege.edu/2014Sochi and www.teamusa.org.

2014 Westminster athletes headed to Russia:
Maddie Bowman (Halfpipe) Sophomore, Undeclared
Joss Christensen (Ski Slopestyle) Freshman, Undeclared
Alex Deibold (Snowboardcross), Freshman, Undeclared
Jessie Diggins (Cross Country) Sophomore, Undeclared
Bryan Fletcher (Nordic Combined) Freshman, Undeclared
Taylor Fletcher (Nordic Combined) Freshman, Business
Julia Ford (Alpine), Freshman, Undeclared
Travis Ganong (Alpine) Freshman, Undeclared
Jared Goldberg (Alpine) Freshman, Undeclared
Faye Gulini (Snowboardcross) Sophomore, Undeclared
Jackie Hernandez (Snowboardcross) Freshman, Undeclared
Lindsey Jacobellis (Snowboardcross) Freshman, Undeclared
Jessika Jenson (Snowboard Slopestyle) Freshman, Undeclared
Jessica Jerome (Ski Jumping) Junior, Economics
Torin Koos (Cross Country) Master of Professional Communication
Devin Logan (Ski Slopestyle) Freshman, Undeclared
Megan McJames (Alpine) Sophomore, Undeclared
Heather McPhie (Moguls) Junior, Psychology
Eliza Outtrim (Moguls) Freshman, Undeclared
Brita Sigourney (Halfpipe) Junior, Business
Leanne Smith (Alpine) Freshman, History
Marco Sullivan (Alpine) Freshman, Undeclared
Jacqueline Wiles (Alpine) Freshman, Undeclared