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Ithaca College Student-Athlete to Compete in Rio Olympics

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“I’m a senior here at Ithaca college. I’m studying Integrated Marketing and Communication,” Emily Morley said. 

Morley considers herself a typical college student: “Just a typical college lifestyle really,” she said. 

However, she’s a pretty atypical athlete. She’s only one of three athletes to qualify for the Olympic Games out of the Ithaca College athletic program and the only one to do it as an undergraduate.

“I’m still actually in shock. It hasn’t really sunk in yet,” Morley said. 

She’ll be competing at the Summer Olympics in Rio in the Women’s Single 2,000 Meters.

The news came to her by surprise.

“Leaving Chile, we had no idea. No hope that I would go to Rio,” Morley said. 

“We thought it would be near impossible that she would get a spot and 14 days later, someone sent us a very brief email with not a lot of explanation saying “you’re in,’” Coach Becky Robinson said. 

This news has a special significance to coach who nearly qualified for the Olympic Games years ago.  Now, she’s finally getting her opportunity to compete; not as an athlete, but as a coach this time.

“I just missed making the team in ’92,” Robinson said. 

Before Morley and coach head to Rio, they have an unfinished story back in Ithaca.  Training for the Olympics will start with competing in Morley’s senior season with hopes of winning an NCAA Championship.

“Get an NCAA bid this year. That would be a dream of mine. I went to the NCAA Championship my freshman year, and haven’t been back since. So it would be cool to tie up my four years with that as well,” Morley said.

Morley is originally from the Bahamas. She will be the first person to represent the Bahamas in the sport of rowing. 

Four female student filmmakers from Ithaca College are making a documentary on Morley’s journey to the Olympics called “2,000 Meters Out.” They are continuing to film and are fundraising to go to Rio with Morley. If you’re interested in contributing to their efforts, click here.

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