From UA Walk-on to American Record HolderLara Jackson swims her way to the top.
Former University of Arizona swimmer Lara Jackson is swimming her way to the top thanks, in part, to the generosity of Wildcat Club supporters.
The seven-time NCAA champion is competing in the USA World Championship trials in Indianapolis in July 2009. The top two swimmers in each division will go on to compete with Team USA in the World Championship in Rome later in the month. These events are part of her training for the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
These are incredible feats for any athlete, especially one who started her collegiate career as a walk on.
“Thank God they let me walk on,” says Jackson, who knew the UA was the place she wanted to swim. She later earned a scholarship, made possible by The Wildcat Club, a donor group dedicated to providing financial support for scholarships, equipment and team travel. “The scholarship was more helpful than I can try to explain,” she says.
Jackson began swimming when she was 10 years old, after attending her older sister’s swim practice. Since then, she has been in the pool year-round, swimming for club and school teams, including her high school team in El Paso, Texas.
During her career at Arizona, Jackson broke school records in the 50-yard freestyle, 100-yard butterfly, 200-yard medley relay, and 200-yard and 400-yard freestyle relays.