Zeffenbergen – It was in the middle of the night when Zevenbergen’s Kristi Nagzim, 22, received a message from her US swimming coach: She had won the Newcomer of the Year award. Then of course I threw a big “yes”, smiling.
Last January, Christie boarded a plane to New York to embark on a swimming adventure for Francis College in the United States. The award shows that this is going well for her. Sports play a much larger role in educational institutions in the United States than Dutch students. Colleges like Francis College host their own award ceremonies to honor student-athletes. So we caught the attention of the swimming team.
“It was a surprise,” she said at the kitchen table in her parents’ house. I returned from America at the end of May due to the summer vacation. I will be back like this again in August. The awards ceremony was held online so I didn’t miss anything, but the time difference meant I had to watch at night.”
I thought, why not try it? And now I’m sitting there. In New York City!
With a scholarship in her pocket, Kristi started a human movement science course at Francis College in January, but her main focus is of course on swimming. “I’ve been swimming all my life. In Holland, last period with PSV Eindhoven. By the way, when two friends of mine, for other sports, left for America, I thought: Why don’t you try it? And now I’m sitting there. In New York City!”
The first week after her arrival was very difficult for her. “You don’t know anyone,” she says. ,, But the people there are very nice, and I was immediately accepted into the swim team, so I quickly felt at home. I even live with a few of my classmates in my own apartment, not on campus like many students.”
Kristi has a multi-level role on the swim team. “Breastfeeding is my specialty, but I also master other disciplines, so my coach allows me to swim a lot during competitions,” she says with a modest smile. That’s why I think I won this award, because I’m doing well, but also because I’m good in the team, because at least that’s important in America.”
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