First-Year Hannah Chappell- Dick is already turning heads in her young career. In the fall Cross Country season, she received an ODAC Athlete of the Week recognition and found herself on the All-ODAC First Team at the close of the year.
As the Track & Field season starts up, Chappell-Dick is starting right where she left off in the fall. She ended the Liberty Kickoff, the team’s first meet of the year, by setting the school record for the one-mile run with a 5:25.09 time. One month and three meets later, Hannah has already shattered that record by more than 12 seconds, and has set and reset the school’s 800m record.
These accolades can be attributed to the hard work Chappell-Dick has been putting in her whole track and field career. She finished her senior year at Bluffton as the state runner-up in the 800m, as well as her relay teams in the 4×800, 4×200, and 4×400 finishing in the top six. She qualified for the USATF Jr. Nationals and was given the oppor- tunity to anchor Team Ohio’s 4×800 at the Midwest Meet of Champions, which she describes as “a dream come true.”
Chappell-Dick has been competing in track events since grade 7, starting as a jumper before moving to a full time runner as a sophomore. The next year she joined her school’s cross country team, which she says has really helped her with her mid-distance events.
“Mentally, it makes my [track and field events] seem significantly quicker.” Here at EMU, she really en- joys the team chemistry that cross-
country has together, something that can’t be replicated with track and field. “We get split up into our differ- ent events, while in cross country, we spend the entire race with each other.”
She really enjoys her coach, Jason Lewkowicz, explaining, “he tries to keep my life balanced. I am involved in a lot of things, outside athletics.”
This includes volunteering at Big Brothers and Big Sisters, where she spends time with her five year old “little”. She says it, “gives her a fix of non-college students.”
Chappell-Dick says she enjoys school, too, providing that it gives her a challenge, something she enjoys about both academics and athletics. Running is a challenge that, for her, yields visible payback. “The work you put in is directly proportional to the time you put up. It is why I enjoy academics, as well. It allows to me to live intentionally.”
The spotlight has come quickly in Chappell-Dick’s first year at EMU. Deciding on EMU, without track being a significant factor, for a secondary education has been a great choice for her.
“EMU is just very personal and friendly. I get the necessary atten- tion in my classes and the atmo- sphere on campus is warm.” The at- tention received in athletics has its pros and cons for Chappell-Dick.
While she feels the recognition is validated due to the hard work she has put in over the years, she knows other people work very hard, but do not receive deserving recognition. “Athletes are given a disproportional share of spotlight, and along with that comes a responsibility to be humble and be a light to others. However, a candle doesn’t need a spotlight to shine, so that’s not limited to athletes.”
Chappell-Dick acknowledges she is extremely blessed for everything that has happened to her, in life and athletics. The future is looking bright for the first-year; besides track, she is a Biology major who plans on going to graduate school for a career in exercise science.