Owen Rood, a 2012 Tufts graduate, enjoyed
success as a Jumbo swimmer from the moment he jumped into the pool.
In his collegiate debut on November 22, 2008 in a tri-meet at
Connecticut College with Middlebury, Rood won the 50 and 100
freestyles and anchored the 200 medley relay to a victory.
He went on to become one of the most accomplished swimmers in Tufts history. He owns the Jumbo program's fastest times in the 50 freestyle (20.33 seconds) and the 100 freestyle (45.20), and was part of the all-time fastest 200 medley relay, 200 freestyle relay and 400 freestyle relay. On a national level, he was a four-time NCAA Championship qualifier who has earned All-American honors in 10 events. In March, he won the NESCAC championships in the 500 and 100 freestyles.
"What I accomplished in my career at Tufts was a testament to our coach, Adam Hoyt, and to the teammates who have surrounded me for four years," Rood said. "The mental aspect of swimming is something that athletes and coaches have battled with for years. How does one maintain focus, drive, and commitment while spending hours swimming up and down a pool each week? Anytime I hit a rough patch in a season, the team stepped up and answered that question for me each and every time. To succeed in a sport that requires you to thrive in a world of no oxygen, constant repetition, and lonely hours, one has to surround themselves with a team and family who make the hours outside of the pool exciting and invigorating."
Like all NESCAC athletes, Rood is much more than what he achieved in athletic competition. This summer he is in Chicago training for Teach for America by teaching reading and writing to sixth graders in summer school. In August he will move on to Milwaukee and begin teaching secondary special education for Milwaukee Public Schools.
"I am absolutely thrilled that I was accepted into the Teach for America program," Rood said. "Both of my parents and one of my older brothers teach currently so it is somewhat of a family tradition. I'm glad that after receiving so many years of elite education I will have the opportunity to jump right into the workforce and make a real difference in children's lives."
Rood was a history major with a minor in entrepreneurial leadership.
"Tufts challenged me academically and opened me up to the world that exists beyond graduation," he said. "The swim team was engaged with the university as a whole and swimming was just one fantastic facet of our college experience."