Healy Awarded Woytowych Endowed Scholarship
May 31, 2012
NORMAL, Ill. - Illinois State senior Kelly Healy exemplifies enthusiasm and passion for the sport of swimming, embodying the true attitude and spirit of a Redbird student-athlete. Based on her passion for Illinois State, Healy has been awarded the Dede Woytowych Endowed Scholarship for 2012-13 academic year.
The scholarship was established in 2006, after former Illinois State swimmer Diedre "Dede" Woytowych passed away unexpectedly in 2005. The Woytowych Scholarship is presented annually to a swimmer who follows in Woytowych's footsteps of being a good teammate, hard-worker and possessing a love for the sport of swimming. Head coach Steve Paska, the Woytowych family and the Redbird Athletics Department started the scholarship to keep Woytowych and Illinois State swimming and diving together forever.
Paska feels Healy is enthusiastic in her daily life as a Redbird student-athlete and is the perfect selection for the scholarship.
"The decision to choose Kelly was a collective decision by the coaching staff," said Paska. "She has a great attitude and passion about being a Redbird student-athlete and is well-respected by her teammates and the coaching staff. Kelly has made tremendous strides as a student-athlete the past three years, strives for excellence in the classroom and displays an outstanding work ethic in the water on a daily basis. Kelly has truly been a joy to coach and I am anxiously looking forward to her senior year."
Healy was honored to be selected for the scholarship and has a personal connection to Woytowych, who graduated from Nequa Valley High School nine years before she did. "I am blessed and humbled to be selected for his scholarship," said Healy. "Although I never met Dede personally, I did have the chance to get to know her mom and hear about the type of person she was. She is still an inspiration to everyone at Nequa Valley and in the Redbird swimming and diving program. I hope to honor her memory by working hard every day in the pool and in the classroom and eventually follow in her footsteps as a coach and teacher."
Healy swam a personal-best in the 500-yard freestyle (5:08.57) at the 2012 Missouri Valley Conference championships and was named Most Improved at the team's 2012 awards banquet. The Naperville, Ill., native was also selected as a team captain for the 2012-13 season. As a sophomore, she recorded a personal-best time in the 100-yard backstroke (1:06.41) against Illinois and ended the season with personal-best times in the 100-yard freestyle (54.46) and 200-yard freestyle (1:57.61) at the MVC Championships.
The Woytowych Endowed Scholarship is one of 24 endowed scholarships available to Illinois State student-athletes that are funded by private donors. To view current student-athletes who have received endowed scholarships, click here. For more information about establishing an endowed scholarship, please call the Weisbecker Scholarship Fund office at (309) 438-3803. To read about each current endowment in more detail, click here.
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