April 18, 2018

Irina Andrianova: Big Ten Medal of Honor Finalist

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After being an outstanding student-athlete at the Ohio State University for the last four years what has been the most rewarding experience or opportunity during your time here? 

Over the last four years my most rewarding experience has been welcoming new teammates. I don’t get to stay on the team forever, but I can make sure that the experience for my new teammates is the best it can be. They are the future of this team.

What makes you a good candidate for this award? Is there anyone in particular you would like to thank for helping you during your time at Ohio State?

My rich experience with competing as a competitive pistol shooter has led me to success in my athletic world. At the same time I have complemented my athletics with academic success as well. Balancing these two worlds and showing that having both is possible if you put the work in, is what makes me a good candidate for this award.

I would like to thank my coaches for believing in me. It didn’t matter if I was performing terribly or feeling a bit down, they would always be there to get me back up; always believing in me. On a rough day when I thought there was no way that I could accomplish anything they would push back adamantly and tell me I had everything I needed inside of me. They were there to believe in me when I didn’t.

I would also like to thank my athletic support staff. Without them, I wouldn’t be able to compete. From sickness to eligibility, they had my back covered. As a student-athlete I tend to have a lot on my plate and sometimes bite off more than I can chew. My support staff is there making sure I can work through it and come out on top.

In your opinion what does it mean to be a student-athlete, especially at a university like Ohio State?

To be a student athlete at Ohio State, means you never settle. We are given many resources courtesy of the university, but we take it upon ourselves to use them to excel at any task we are given. We strive to be the best we can be. At the same time we rely on our teammates when we need to because we are not alone here. We are one big team.

After graduation how do you plan to take what you have learned as a student-athlete into the business world/professional athletic endeavors?

Leaving Ohio State, I plan to use the valuable skills I have picked up during my time here. Through the hard times I have learned to push myself even when things look hopeless. I have the ability to achieve anything I set my mind to. Also, I know that it is okay for me to ask for help. I have friends and family that are there to help when times get tough. At OSU I learned to rely on my teammates, and even though I’m leaving my team now I still am connected to them and those around me. Knowing these things I know I am prepared to enter the professional world.