Boston College Swimming   

May 28, 2004                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Chestnut Hill, Massachusetts


Brian McLaughlin – 2004 Wilma Rudolph Award

Senior Captures N4A Rudolph Award –Boston College Law School in the Fall


Brian McLaughlin Jr. who graduated from Boston College on May 23rd, 2004 will be heading off to Boston College Law School in the Fall.  While at BC Brian was a four year letter winner on the varsity Swim Team.  Brian was not your regular team member as he was special in many ways.  Brian came to Boston College from Oliver Ames High School in North Easton, Massachusetts.  He came to BC just like he came to practice at the William Flynn Sports Complex for all four years – in a wheelchair.  Brian has cerebral palsy.  He is unable to walk unattended but he can swim.  Brian did not bring first place medals to the program but he did bring his heart.  His effort everyday in practice equaled anyone’s best effort even though while his teammates may be trying to break 21 seconds in a 50 yard freestyle – Brian’s goal was to break three minutes over the same distance.  Brian concluded his collegiate swimming career this past February with a flurry of personal bests times.  More importantly he finished with the respect of both his coach, Tom Groden, and his teammates.  Brian’s daily effort in trying to be the best swimmer he could be was an inspiration for all with whom he trained and competed.

      Brian will accept his Wilma Rudolph Award at a dinner in Indianapolis on June 19th.  The Award is sponsored by the National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletes.  Brian will be accompanied by his parents, Brian and Jean McLaughlin (North Easton, Massachusetts) and other family members.  The Award is named after Wilma Rudolph, who overcame difficulty walking in her early childhood to become an Olympic Gold Medalist in track.  Here is the criteria for the Wilma Rudolph Award.


Wilma Rudolph Achievement Award (established by the N-4-A National Association of Academic Advisors for Athletics) is intended to honor from five to 10 young men and women who have overcome great personal, academic, and/or emotional odds to achieve academic success while participating in intercollegiate athletics.  These young men and women may not be your best athletes or students, and therefore may not have been recognized by other organizations or awards but they have persevered and made significant personal strides towards success.  We recognize them for their achievements with the Wilma Rudolph Achievement Award.