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Thread: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?

  1. #1
    tharrtell
    Guest

    Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    Sarah is clearly at a crossroads and in the process of making the difficult decision of what to do next. She's already won the grand prize when it comes to figure skating. What should she do next?

    It takes a huge amount of mental and physical motivation to keep going as an elite skater. Does she have the drive to push forward? She's talked about going to college and being a 'normal' kid. Aside from the fact that, as an Oly gold medalist (in figure skating, to boot) she's never going to be a normal kid, she has many alluring opportunities on the college front. Should she completely change direction and go away to school? Should she sign with SOI?

    It all depends on what she wants in the future, but I hope she considers all the ramifications. School probably sounds like fun - especially if she needs a change of pace because she's having trouble finding motivation to continue as on Oly eligible skater. However, if I were her, I'd try very hard to maintain a solid foot in the door to the world of figure skating. Even with a degree from Harvard, the 'real world' isn't that glamorous. Figure skating will provide her with opportunities that Harvard can't come close to offering - even though, I think an education is extremely important.

    Thoughts on what she should do? This is certainly no life and death decision, but a lot for a 17 year old to think through.

    tharrtell

  2. #2
    rgirl181
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    Good questions and points, Thartell. And actually, these are at least life decisions:D Of course only Sarah, with the help and support of her family, can decide, but I too hope she doesn't throw in the towel on skating yet. Oh, how much time many of us feel we have in our late teens and early 20s, yet at the same time we feel we have to do things now (sometimes we do). Here's my take: First I'd like to see Sarah take a break (the injury doesn't count) as in a vacation break for some true R&R. Sarah's life has been such a whirlwind since SLC and I don't think she's had the opportunity to "veg" over it, which I think is important. I'm being serious. I think when something like that happens, your brain processes certain things when you're not thinking about them better than when you are. It's the old proverbial "sleep on it" advice. Of course it's hard not to think about it, but if I were Sarah, I'd take time to go to ballgames, shows, travel for fun, lie on the beach, whatever it is that would allow her to relax, recharge, and ruminate.

    I think Sarah might also want to take a crack at going to school part-time similar to the way Michelle did. It may be that Sarah is indeed ready to move on to academia, but I think a good way to find out is to actually do it, and not just one or two fairly easy courses (though from what I know about Sarah, she really pushes herself academically). On the one hand, I agree with you Thartell, that what may seem inticing to Sarah may only seem that way from her standpoint of the grind of training, competing, and doing shows. Because she's been a top skater for so long, she may not be able to enjoy what she has. OTOH, she may truly be tired of everything that goes into being a top competitive skater, including having to keep up with the ever increasing demands of jumps and also having to stay so thin. Don't get me wrong, Sarah's got an absolutely gorgeous body, but after puberty, Sarah no longer had the automatically sleek body she had at 15. With Sarah, it seems to be only a matter of five or 10 pounds, but it's still a lot of work and I know with dancers, many girls simply get tired of being hungry all the time.

    But for myself, I hope Sarah decides to keep skating. I love watching her skate and I love watching her skating develop. It's such a short time that one can physically do all this stuff that I tend to want them to take full advantage of it. But then, Sarah may feel a different calling. Whatever she decides, I'm sure Sarah will make an impact. I wouldn't be surprised if someday people won't be talking about President Hughes (although right now she seems more into the sciences).
    Rgirl

  3. #3
    lottafs
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    She may want to go to college, live in dorms, get crazily drunk at frat parties and spring break and take a break from skating. :rollin: Skaters should need a little break from skating to do some "normal life" stuff.

  4. #4
    rgirl181
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    Oops, hit wrong button.

  5. #5
    tharrtell
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    I'm sure Sarah will be successful in whatever she chooses - she's a hard working, talented, young woman. I feel for her, though, she's going to be making some pretty big decisions as she's still so young.

    I didn't take full advantage of my senior year in college because I was ready to be out on my own - independent and making money. I remember going on recruiting trips to CPA/consulting firms and being so allured by the big offices and tall buildings in downtown LA and SF. Of course recruiting is the honeymoon and things changes drastically once you've signed on the dotted line. Hindsight it always 20/20, but I just didn't realized how good college really was until I was away. I just don't want Sarah to fall into the same trap.

    Regardless, though, she'll make the best choices she can at the time she makes them, and I'm sure she'll do well with whatever choices she makes. I wish her luck.

  6. #6
    Vicky458
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    If Sarah's goals are to become a physician as she has stated many times, then she shoulc go to Harvard and try to achieve that goal. She has already achieved her goal in figure skating(the OG).

  7. #7
    Joesitz
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    I see Sarah as a very intelligent young lady who will make the right decision.

    Vicky - We already have two that I know of as Olympians cum doctors.

    Joe

  8. #8
    rgirl181
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    I wonder if Sarah is truly away of what is happening to physicians with the continuing problems in health care (don't worry, I won't get political, except to say that the situation is very political:D ). Of course Sarah is very intelligent, but these days, being a physician is getting to be more like an administrator. It's great to say, and mean, "I've wanted to be a physician (or attorney or whatever) as long as I can remember" but these professions have changed drastically over the years. Medicine still might be what fulfills Sarah most, but I don't think anybody should go into something just because they've said in the past that that's what they've wanted. That's why I'm hoping Sarah takes some time off to rest and also spends some time going to school before making a decision. Finally, even though Sarah has great intelligence, great family support, and great common sense, the one thing she doesn't have is much experience outside of figure skating--just like other top skaters. Knowing the state of medicine today and what's coming down the pike, I would advise anybody who is thinking of becoming a physician to volunteer in a teaching hospital and a typical medical practice before they decide. Medicine may still be the right thing for Sarah, but I hope she'll give herself the opportunity to see what it's really like before she decides.
    Rgirl

  9. #9
    Nadine
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    You pose a thought-provoking question <strong>tharrtell</strong>, <img src="http://www.stopstart.fsnet.co.uk/mica/STARWyoda.gif"/>

    I take it this question comes in the wake of the Washington Post article, as well as some other recent ones wherein Sarah has been musing about her options (i.e. skating vs. Harvard).

    I'd like to offer the same opinion/advice I posted last year on the old FSW as regards Sarah, skating, & college:

    <strong>Sarah</strong>, you are only young once.........and skating is a sport that is not kind to aging bones nor does it wait for <em>anyone</em>.........whereas college will always be there waiting for you; not so skating. And I honestly believe wholeheartedly that if you should quit eligible skating, especially at the young age of 17, you'll regret it later on in life. And believe me you, regrets are the worst possible thing to live with (I speak from experience btw).

    ***Note: don't make the same mistake as Oksana Baiul - to this day it seems to me that she still regrets turning pro - just read the latest article from her on Golden Skate. BTW, she also mentioned this several times on her old official board. And also has been unsuccessful in trying to reinstate. Personally, I blame the guardian that was in charge of the then 16 yr. old orphan, whom also was responsible for moving Oksana to the USA from Russia (among other things).***

    Or Sarah can try to do both (i.e. skating & college simultaneously).........just don't take an entire season off.........otherwise you will NEVER be the same skater that you were before. Especially nowadays when the technical demands are getting tougher & tougher - for that reason alone one cannot afford to take a season off (btw ask Michelle Kwan; her sister basically told her the same thing when asked). Maybe try cutting back on the number of competitions, such as the fluff ones. And only doing the basics. Actually a good example to follow is Michelle Kwan - she still goes to college & skates - just follow her example. (;^)

    Peace & Love, Nadine

    P.S. Sarah, I find it highly commendable that you see the value & importance of an education........I, myself, matriculated from K.U.........and extra kudos to you for wanting to become a doctor - following in the footsteps of Tenley Albright & Debbi Thomas. (:^)

    <em>"Jay should have had it all...and it makes me so sad that he didn't...because he was better than all of us." - Stacy Peralta commenting on 1970s skateboard phenom Jay Adams</em>

    Lest I forget to say: <strong>CONGRATULATIONS, MS. HUGHES, ON WINNING THE PRESTIGIOUS SULLIVAN AWARD!</strong>

  10. #10
    Ladskater
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    tharrtell:

    All good points, but even skaters themselves know they can't skate forever. One day Sarah may want to use that Diploma hanging on her wall. As much as we seasoned skaters never want to hang up our skates we basically know the day does come and realize that figure skating is for the young. Sure we can still drop in to the rink and glide around, but there comes a time when it all slows down. I am sure Sarah will make the right decision. She seems well grounded. It can't hurt to have a good education!

    Ladskater

  11. #11
    nysk8r
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    Whatever choice she makes I hope she enjoys herself doing it. Personally, I would like it if she stayed eligible- I always saw her as a unique skater.

  12. #12
    Excidra2001
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    As humans we tend to believe doing one thing at time and putting full effort in it equals success. But that couldn't be more wrong. What's wrong with doing two things at time, just split the time.
    Take Kwan and Slutskaya for example. Kwan considered one of the favorites in every competition she enters is going to school and still skating. Slutskaya attended University the season after she won her first European title and she was the talk of the skating world. It took her five years to earn her degree, but she earned it while skating to the top of the world.

    She's only 17 and that(imo) is too young to leave skating. She has won gold at the Olympics, but has yet to win a world title and a national title.
    It's her decision and I hope she makes one she can live with for the rest of her life.

  13. #13
    Piel
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    Of the skaters in the Olympic eligible ranks or who have recently turned pro, which ones have attended college/university. Who has earned their degree? Is skating while attending university in Europe and Asia the same as it is here in the USA...class load etc?

    Piel

  14. #14
    Allie Katz
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    I think she should skate with SOI for a season or two, then go to Harvard full-time.

    SOI would be a good experience for her, she'll be 18 by that time (and she's pretty mature for her years, anyway), and she can rake in some mega-bucks.

    I don't think she should try to stay a competitive eligible skater and go to college at the same time. It's too hard to do both things well.

    Besides, she's already won Olympic Gold - the top prize for eligible skaters. She can always skate professionally in shows or whatever, and no matter what happens, her eligible career will always be considered a success because of the Olympic Gold.

    I think the choice is clear: SOI for a year or two, then Harvard.

    Hopefully, she'll at least get a medal at Worlds next week, and then maybe these decisions won't be so hard for her to make.


  15. #15
    heyang
    Guest

    Re: Ms. Hughes ... what to do?


    These are statuses while they were before they turned pro.

    MK - attends UCLA
    Paul Wylie - Harvard graduate. won Oly medal after graduation
    Nancy K - associates degree
    Tonia K - bachelor's degree
    Debi Thomas - Stamford grad - now dR
    Kristi Y - took some classes but did not matriculate.


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