The Vancouver Winter Olympics are just a month away, and we are highlighting Asian American athletes who’ll be representing the U.S. every week.
This week, we’ve got the spotlight on Julie Chu, who will be going to the Olympics as a part of the U.S. women’s hockey team.
Julie hails from Fairfield, Conn., and Duluth, Minn. This will be the 27-year-old’s third Olympics and, as you can see from her photo, she’s already won two medals (one bronze from 2006 Torino, a silver from 2002 Salt Lake City). That doesn’t count the three golds she won for the World Championships in 2005, 2008 and 2009.
And she’s not just good. She’s gooood. She was named one of the top three players of Team USA in 2009. She’s the first Asian American on the U.S. National Team. She first joined the U.S. National Team in 2000 when she was a senior in high school, so she had to defer her senior year (and give up her position as student body president). I mean, her accolades go on and on. Suffice to say, she kicks butt on the ice.
Oh, and besides being a two-time Olympian and medalist, she’s also a graduate of Harvard. Yeah, she played hockey there, too, graduating as the all-time assists leader in Harvard’s history. (Her 284 career points is the all-time record for NCAA women’s hockey.) Not too shabby. Matter of fact, she’s done Asian American women everywhere mighty proud.
So now that we feel insignificant and underachieving, let’s bring Julie back to earth. Some very “normal” facts about Julie:
* Julie loves to cook. She says the Food Network is her guilty pleasure.
* The 5-foot-8-inch first generation Chinese American has a tattoo on her right foot — it’s of the Olympic rings with her number (13) under them.
* Her nickname on the ice is Saint Chuey because of her sweet nature. (OK, now we’re feeling insignificant again.)
* Young Julie started out in figure skating, but was more interested in the sport her brother Richard was playing — hockey. She asked her parents is she could switch. The rest is history.
Good luck to Julie and Team U.S.A.!
To get more info on the Olympics, go to www.teamusa.org and NBCOlympics.com.