Thank You, Buckeye Nation

By: Paul DeLakis

I recently graduated from The Ohio State University, but I am not done with school quite yet. I will be following in my father’s footsteps and have decided to further my academic career at Illinois College of Optometry in Chicago. Growing up, it was always a dream of mine to be an optometrist and I am happy to say I am just four short years away from making that dream become reality.

The wonderful academic and athletic support I have received over the last four years as a Buckeye helped me achieve many great honors. One of my proudest moments is becoming a 10-time All-American and winning the Big Ten Championship in the 200 Individual Medley and the 200 Freestyle. I also experienced being part of the best back-to-back NCAA Championships finishes for an Ohio State men’s swimming and diving team in 58 years. We placed 9th in the Nation in 2019 and 7th this year. Leaving The Ohio State University better than how I found it was at the top of my goals, and I could not have done that without all the help from everyone, behind-the-scenes or on the front lines!

As this chapter of my life closes and I begin to open the next one, I cannot help but reminisce on all of the wonderful memories I have gained throughout my time here. The number of resources and the amount of support we receive as Buckeyes to achieve our highest goals are unmatched.

Thank you for all of your support throughout my four years here.

One of my favorite experiences during my time at Ohio State was from the Lead Like a Buckeye program within the Eugene D. Smith Leadership Institute, led by Urban Meyer. The lessons he taught me will stick with me for life, beyond my time as a student-athlete, enriching my personal life and my professional career.

The last four years have been full of outstanding opportunities and exciting accomplishments, all of which would not have been possible without the help and generosity of each and every one of you. Thank you for having faith in the abilities of student-athletes like myself and for creating such an array of outstanding opportunities for Buckeyes to excel in the classroom and in their sport!

Go Buckeyes!

Paul DeLakis
Ohio State Men’s Swimming
Biology ‘21