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Senior swimmer Nathan Vredeveld (Chattanooga, Tenn.) recently sat down with to talk about the Virginia swimming and diving program’s mindset heading into the Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, his plans after UVa and more.

What is the mindset of the team as they approach the upcoming ACCs?

Vredeveld: We’re a few weeks out so we’re getting ready for it and trying to stay mentally focused on the goal. We’re also relaxed and having fun still since we have two and half weeks left. We’re all trying to get our speed but transitioning from the more heavy lifting to more speed work and sprinting. You always have your taper, but you have to come out of that staying true and in the back of your mind have a great day.

What has been the most rewarding part of your career?

Vredeveld: The team stuff and really being a part of something bigger than yourself and having the opportunity to be with these guys and really go to battle with them. I look forward to it in every meet.

What has been your favorite class at UVa?

Vredeveld: I’m an art history major, so I’ve had a bunch of art classes. I really like the Italian renaissance art and Paris impressionism art classes that I’ve taken over the past few years. I’m also a religious studies minor and am taking this Buddhist meditation course now that’s really fun. It’s the history of meditation and contemporary ideas of meditation and in the discussion section you actually do a walking and standing meditation that’s really cool. It’s more of just calming of the mind and calming of the soul so it helps me relax and it helps with my breathing and getting my mind off of other stuff. It’s about keeping my brain busy and relaxing it.

What are your plans after Virginia?

Vredeveld: No plans for the summer yet, but I’m looking for more travel opportunities to work with travel companies this summer or next year. My first choice is the UK Fellows program, which is teaching and coaching at a private school in England. There are five different cities that they do it at. I’m really hoping I get that, I have interviews over the next few months, and a friend of mine, David Wren (Class of 2012), is doing it and turned me onto it, as it’s a great opportunity. That’s my first choice but I’m also applying to other travel companies to hopefully do some tour guide work either this summer, before it, or next year.

Where would your ideal place to be a tour guide?

Vredeveld: I guess France. I actually lived there for a summer when I was in high school when I took a language immersion program and spent a lot of time there. I’m moderately fluent in French, seen a lot of historical sites there with art history, but also I really like the Italian stuff too.

What will you miss most about UVa?

Vredeveld: The team, being with all of them every day and having a lot of fun. Everyone just has a great personality.

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