Get to know the Athlete Role Models: Molly Schaus
The International Olympic Committee (IOC) announced a list of Athlete Role Models (ARMs) who will support the young athletes going to the 2nd Winter Youth Olympic Games from 12 to 21 February 2016 in Lillehammer, Norway. They are presented individually through a short interview. Today: Molly Schaus.
Name: Molly Schaus
Sport: Ice Hockey
How/why did you start your sport?
I started playing hockey so I could keep up with my older brothers. We were living in Minnesota at the time, and we all learned to skate on the pond in our backyard. I played a lot of street hockey too, and started playing goalie because that was the only way my brothers would let me play. I quickly fell in love with the sport and position and started playing officially when I was eight.
What achievements are you most proud of in your sporting career?
There were a lot of great steps along the way, but I think I am most proud of making the 2010 Olympic team and winning a silver medal with my teammates. It was my dream ever since I watched the 1998 Olympics to make the team, so to be there, at that moment with my family and friends and teammates, was truly surreal.
What achievements are you most proud of outside your sporting career?
Outside my hockey career, I truly value the opportunities I have had to give back, and the amazing people I have met and learned from along the way. Whether it is visiting schools, hospitals or building internationally with Habitat for Humanity, I have stepped outside my comfort zone, and these experiences have definitely shaped me and opened my mind to future careers.
Your favourite moment at the Olympics?
My favourite memory from the Olympics has to be the Opening Ceremony in Vancouver in 2010. There was so much excitement and anticipation leading up that night, and walking in with the rest of my teammates and USA athletes was when the scale of the Olympics truly hit me. To have athletes from all over the world united and celebrating the power of sport was incredible. Also, having my parents in the stands will always be one of my favourite memories.
What made you want to participate in the Youth Olympic Games? What do you like most about the concept of the Youth Olympic Games?
My favourite concept of the Youth Olympic Games is combining the competition with the Learn and Share programmes. I wanted to participate because I think the values of Olympism are so important, and when you get caught up in the Olympics and winning medals, sometimes you miss out on the bigger picture and the cultural experiences that the Village provides. These young athletes will have the best of both worlds, competing against the best, showcasing their talents, while learning and experiencing different cultures, and celebrating the world of sport. It is a win-win.
What are you looking forward to the most in Lillehammer 2016?
I am most looking forward to getting to know the athletes, hearing their stories and sharing my experiences. Sports are a universal language, and I think this is an incredible experience for the young athletes to learn and grow, not only in their sport but as they look to the next phase of their life.
What’s next for you in your career?
I retired from USA Hockey earlier this summer and am still trying to figure out my next step. I definitely want to stay in the sports world and am doing some coaching now.
What are your hobbies?
I enjoy spending time with my friends and family, reading, playing other sports (running / tennis / ball hockey), travelling, and playing card & board games.
Anything else you want to add?
I am honoured to be part of Lillehammer 2016 and can't wait to participate in February!