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Jan. 17, 2013

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Senior swimmer Christine Olson (Gilbert, Ariz.) recently sat down with to talk about how her final collegiate season is going, the big rivalry meet with North Carolina and more. UVa faces North Carolina on Saturday, Jan. 19 at the Aquatic and Fitness Center. The women start at 3 p.m., while the men begin at noon.

Question: How do you feel about the season so far and heading into the second half of the season?

Olson: I feel pretty well. I’ve had a lot of ups and downs throughout my career here at UVa, but I’m really eager to end it on a high note and I feel pretty good about doing that. I’m excited for taper and the big meets coming up because getting through the beginning of the year with that first month of training is really difficult. Now we’re getting to the exciting part of the season with UNC, the big tri-meet (against Wisconsin and Virginia Tech) and ACCs.

Question: Speaking of UNC, this is traditionally Virginia’s biggest rival and this is a big week for the team. What can you impart to the younger members of the team, having gone through three North Carolina meets already?

Olson: It’s kind of funny because you don’t realize how big the UNC meet is your first year here until you have experienced it. With every year, you get more into it because you see the alumni come back just to watch this meet and see the great part of swimming and sports in general, which is competition and rivalries. I’m excited for the first-years to see this; right now they are a little quiet and timid, but hopefully they will get really fired up to swim fast and beat UNC.

Question: What does it mean to have that last UNC meet at home?

Olson: It’s great to be at home and not in the baby blue pool. We’ll have more alumni back and fans. We’ve been telling our friends and fellow student-athletes to come so hopefully the stands are filled and loud.

Question: What are your individual and team goals for the rest of the season?

Olson: Obviously, we want to six-peat. We want to win all the relays. UNC is our biggest rival at ACCs as well so we want to beat them and get as many points as we can. Individually, I want to end my career on a high note and have a lot of fun with it. I won the 200 breaststroke my freshman year, so it would be awesome to finish off that way, but I’m just excited for the last meet experience than specific times. I want to be really motivated for it because it’s the last time.

Question: What are you going to miss most about UVa?

Olson: The most impacting experience here at UVa has been swimming, because I’m in the water all the time. Everyone on the team, those are my best friends and I’ve gotten really close with everyone here. I’m really going to miss being a part of something, where I care about how other people are performing just as much if not more than myself. Hopefully, from where I go on from UVa, I can find that same experience. I really value having that common goal because that helped get me through every tough practice and waking up early every day.

Question: What are you looking to do after Virginia?

Olson: I have applied for a program to teach English in Japan. I’m half-Japanese so I’d like to go back there, get a year of experience and right now, I don’t have another job opportunity yet. I’m an econ major so I’m also looking at some consulting firms. It would be cool to work in DC where it seems a lot of UVa grads end up. And eventually I want to go to graduate school for hotel management.

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