Emily Hanson, a 21-year-old chemistry major at the University of Michigan, will represent the USA in the 5K and 25K races at the World Swimming Championships.
Emily reported directly from Rome on her first international trip:
"Race time is quickly approaching after a few days of settling into Rome. Things have been great so far. The hotel is nice, the people are really friendly, and the beach is beautiful. The world of open water swimming seems very close-knit and everyone is excited to see each other."
"This morning, we went for our beach swim as a team. The water conditions were awesome and we all got in a really good lap around the [2.5K] course. When we returned we had one of the best cappuccinos that I have had since I have been on this trip. I am quickly becoming addicted--they are sooooo good!"
"After our routine nap time, the rookies, which included myself, prepared their skit and then we headed to the pool. A lot of the teams were there and it was really exciting to see everyone finally arriving. We came back for dinner where we have had some of our best bonding creating new inside jokes and continuously laughing to Paul [Asmuth] being our international guru."
"With this being my first USA Swimming trip ever, I have thoroughly enjoyed the experience so far and I cannot wait to represent the U.S. The team and coaches are all great people who I have loved getting to know. An experience like this one is something that I will never forget. Thanks for all your support! Go USA!"