Jan. 17, 2012
Columbus, Ohio -
With Senior Day fast approaching, OhioStateBuckeyes.com will take time the next two weeks to feature each Buckeye graduating this season. The senior members of the women's swimming and diving team will be recognized Saturday, January 21, at McCorkle Aquatic Pavilion in a dual meet vs. Michigan, while the men's seniors will follow Friday, January 27, at a home tri-meet featuring Big Ten foes Penn State and Michigan.
For Jackie Brousseau, swimming has been a passion since she took her first lesson at the age of four. Since then she has developed into a solid collegiate swimmer, part of two school-record breaking relays thus far in her career at Ohio State.
Swimming, however, is just one piece of Brousseau's experience as a Buckeye. Honored as a Big Ten Distinguished Scholar last season, she has consistently brought the same determination and work ethic she shows in the pool into the classroom.
"I just think it's really important that my life isn't just athletics but it's academics as well," Brousseau said. "I've looked at academics similar to how I view swimming, with goal setting and taking it step by step."
That process has worked well for the OSU Scholar-Athlete and Academic All-Big Ten honoree, as she will graduate a year early with a degree in political science as well as business.
"I'm unbelievably proud of Jackie to go through her undergrad in three years with better than a 3.7 GPA," Ohio State head coach Bill Dorenkott said. "She's come an awfully long way in the pool, but she's also grown a lot as a person. Jackie's someone I look to as an example of what persistence and being tenacious can do for you."
One person who has helped Jackie balance the hardships of balancing athletics and academics is her mother, Karen.
"Although I've had some great coaches over my career, my mom has really been through it all since I was little," Brousseau said. "I'm from California, so flying across the country and dealing with all the changes I've made, she's always been the rock that I can lean on."
Along with her mother, Brousseau goes on to explain the impact Ohio State coaches Dorenkott and Stefanie Williams will have on her life long after swimming.
"The coaches, Bill [Dorenkott] and Stefanie [Williams], just taught me to always be myself," Brousseau said. "When you're going through a hard time, with anything in your life, just be yourself and keep a smile on your face because it's the big picture, not the small things."