Hovland grows up with UNI Diving program - KWWL - Eastern Iowa Breaking News, Weather, Closings

Hovland grows up with UNI Diving program

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As a state champion diver at Cedar Falls High School, Bethany Hovland had plenty of options for where to continue her education. But one thing truly drew her to UNI.

"It was sort of a challenge for me. They were just bringing diving back after several years without it, and I just thought it would be kind of a challenge to kind of pioneer the program and make it stronger", Hovland says.

UNI Diving coach, Lori Meierbachtol adds, "I think we were extremely fortunate to grab her and it was just luck that brought her here I guess."

And despite the challenges that come along with kick-starting a Division-1 diving program, progress is already obvious.

"We've continued to build every year, and it's really cool to see where it started four years ago, and then where it's come now, and we have a bigger diving team now with five divers, and a lot of talent and a lot of potential", Bethany says.

And Bethany continues to be the driving force of this program.

Meierbachtol says, "Bethany has been like a tremendous leader, and what she's accomplished in the amount of four years; the things that she has done, she's really just paved the way for other people to come, and I think she's just been a great component of our sport, of UNI, and she's just a great person to be around."

Even though she's faced her share of challenges over the last three years; to Bethany, every minute has been worth it

"There's been a lot of frustrating and challenging things, but looking back, those are the things that made me a lot better, and overcoming that adversity is kind of what I've thrived on throughout the years in diving. Although it's hard at the time, looking back, it's really caused me to grow a lot as a diver, but just as a person as well."

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