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LA Times article: Michelle Kwan has found there is life after figure skating

Discussion in 'Great Skate Debate' started by Sylvia, Dec 24, 2011.

  1. Sylvia

    Sylvia Prepping for club comp. season!

    I posted this article link in the Kween's Hall of Fame thread in the Trash Can earlier today but thought it deserved its own thread in GSD.

    By Helene Elliott of the Los Angeles Times: Michelle Kwan has found there is life after figure skating
    Last edited: Dec 24, 2011
  2. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

    Thanks, Sylvia, definitely deserving of its own thread.

    No, she hasn't forgotten the sport. And it will never forget her.
  3. feraina

    feraina Well-Known Member

    Such a great article. It made me all teary-eyed. ;) Gosh, I miss Michelle!
  4. MR-FAN

    MR-FAN Kostner Softie

    I freakin love her :) This sport is so lucky to have such an inspiring role model
  5. Japanfan

    Japanfan Well-Known Member

    I was never an uber fan of Kwan the skater - in part she was in the second half of her career when I started watching skating and in part because commentators' adoration of her got on my nerves and spurred my natural tendency to root for the underdog (i.e. I was thrilled when Butryskaya beat Kwan at Worlds).

    But I also thought she was a very classy competitor and am so impressed that she has challenged herself to get an education and move on to a new career. So many skaters stay in the skating world after they retire. Kwan is an exception and an exceptional person. So, I am certainly a fan of Kwan the person.
    smurfy and (deleted member) like this.
  6. l'etoile

    l'etoile New Member

    This comment of Michelle stays there in my mind.
    Congrats to Michelle for finding her next calling and that's so rare for anyone. Really seeing her passion for skating v. how her body was calling the shot, I've come to realize yet again that this sport is a demanding one.

    Of course this sport, figure skating will never forget you Michelle!
  7. Garden Kitty

    Garden Kitty Tranquillo

    I'm so happy that she's found a "second stage" of life that she finds challenging and fulfilling. Her skating has given me a lot of joy, and I hope she has a life full of joy ahead of her in whatever she chooses to do. :respec:
  8. Iceman

    Iceman Well-Known Member

    and if her body hadn't failed her, I wonder how many more years she would have continued skating? Didn't realize she was involved with two skating rinks.
  9. barbk

    barbk Well-Known Member

    I wish Helene Eliot would get some naming straight: Kwan graduated from the University of Denver, not the mythic, "Denver University." Yes, it is called DU (just like the University of Colorado is called CU) but it is never written out as "Denver University." CU isn't Colorado University, either.
  10. Civic

    Civic New Member

    I admire Michelle Kwan, I always have. However, she is more fortunate than most elite skaters in that she earned a nice living from the sport for several years. If she hadn't, she might not be able to afford the University of Denver and Harvard.
  11. Jo Ann

    Jo Ann New Member

    Harvard?? I think she received her master's from Tuft University. Didn't Sarah Hughes attend Harvard?

    Congratulations, Michelle! I saw you many times at the Champions on Ice shows and, as Garden Kitty said, your skating brought me much joy! I am happy for you as you continue your life and find great fulfillment in what you are doing.
  12. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

    There was a big reason why Michelle earned a "nice" living from skating.

    Emily Hughes went to Harvard, Sarah went to Yale.
  13. Zemgirl

    Zemgirl Well-Known Member

    I don't believe Michelle ever went to "Lori Nicholls" for choreography, either. :D
  14. Hannahclear

    Hannahclear Well-Known Member

    Yay Michelle! She had a great career and now has found something else to do. Wouldn't mind a few shows now and then though......just saying....:shuffle:
  15. Triple Butz

    Triple Butz Well-Known Member

    I feel the same way, and it's totally selfish, but I really wish she would at least do one show a year! Totally happy for her and all of her achievements outside of skating, but boy do we miss her on the ice!!
  16. Jenna

    Jenna Well-Known Member

    Beautiful article :)

    I'd love to see Michelle in coaching one day, just like her sister.
  17. Sylvia

    Sylvia Prepping for club comp. season!

    I see Michelle and her sister, Karen, as two very different people with different lives and career paths. I can imagine Michelle giving an occasional coaching clinic (like she did when she visited Argentina as a public envoy a few years ago) in the future, but that's about it.
  18. snoopysnake

    snoopysnake Well-Known Member

    I agree with your congrats to Michelle!

    It's Tufts University, not Tuft. I had hoped to just spot her someplace while she was in the Boston area, but it was not to be.
  19. orbitz

    orbitz Well-Known Member

    I can't imagine Michelle wanting to be stuck in a rink from morning till evening coaching either, especially since she spent all that time in school getting her Master, and she will always be in the public eye in some high-profile event. But then again who would've thought that Paul would end up coaching many years after getting a Harvard M.B.A. and trying the corporate world.
  20. Jo Ann

    Jo Ann New Member

    Ahh, thank you, snoopysnake. My brain told me it was Tufts, but I typed Tuft. I guess that was because her courses were tuft. haha
  21. UGG

    UGG Well-Known Member

    I would venture to say most of her competitors, such as Tara and Sasha, would have been able to put themselves through college as well if they chose to go. Actually, most top tier Olympic athletes can probably put themselves through college if they want to as long as they don't blow all of their endorsements. So yes they are very lucky. I am crossing my fingers that my 10 month old son is some sort of prodigy (math, soccer, don't care!!!) in something so that he can get a scholarship to college. It is sooo expensive!!!
  22. Japanfan

    Japanfan Well-Known Member

    That's true. And in addition, Michelle would probably not have attained her current position as easily - or at all - without her celebrity status as a ice princess. Her profile as a spokesperson for Disney and Barbie (I think Barbie) also established her as a safe bet for diplomacy. She's not a girl to rock the boat or challenge the status quo.

    But at the same time, not many top skaters do earn a Masters degree, reinvent themselves in the international diplomatic arena, and try to make a difference (at least to some extent).

    For that, Michelle should be commended.

    What she does isn't hard work, really, and she's probably handsomely paid. But it's still work and has required a strong commitment, a clear focus, and the courage and willingness to risk the unknown in terms of moving beyond the safe, small world of figure skating.
  23. skatesindreams

    skatesindreams Well-Known Member

    How are you in a position to know, or judge, this?
  24. nubka

    nubka Well-Known Member

    Does this mean that she is no longer "keeping her options open?" It sounds like she really has moved on.
  25. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

  26. nyskatefan

    nyskatefan Active Member


    :) :)
  27. Mathman

    Mathman Active Member

    She does not get paid for her position as a good-will ambassador for the State Department. I am not 100% sure about her service on the President's Fitness Council, the board of directors for the Special Olympics, etc., but typically these are volunteer positions, too.

    That's an interesting comment, because my first impression is that "keeping her options open" is exactly what Michelle is doing. She hasn't announced that she has signed on as Newt Gringrich's campaign manager or joined a foreign policy think tank. She is "keeping her options open." I wonder what will come her way!
  28. kwanette

    kwanette Fetalized since 1998

    I really find this statement a bit ludicrous, Many of the Canton ice dancers attend the U of Mich, Alex Shib, Evan Bates, Charlie White, Meryl Davis...not a cheap school by any means..I really don't understand the point of your post..Many yrs ago MK made the statement that "Education was impt to the Kwan family.." Both Ron and Karen went to college..What I admire about MK was that when she withdrew from Torino, she hopped on a plane and enrolled in school. She graduated. She then enrolled in a Masters program. She graduated. She has found a second passion in her life and I applaud her for it. Yes, and being an "ice princess" may have opened a few doors for her. I assume that Condi Rice, a former skater and Sec of State at the time, was a Kwan fan. She obviously recognized MK's character traits, etc. and felt that she would be a good fit for the envoy position. I'm thrilled for MK, for the work that she is doing now, the work that she has done in the past and the kind of young woman that she is. Instead of snarking and dissecting and blathering on about how fortunate she is..I'm just applauding her induction into the HOF..and happy to be a fan of a young woman who "in fact lived her life as if a child were watching.." loosely quoting Christine Brennan from Feb. 06..

    ETA..""....and in fact lived every moment of her life as if a child might be watching..."
    Last edited: Dec 27, 2011
  29. Mathman

    Mathman Active Member

    kwanette and (deleted member) like this.
  30. Sparks

    Sparks Well-Known Member

    Furthermore, she often said her entire life would not be devoted to FS. She worked hard to make that happen...luck had very little to do with it. Every thing MK has is well earned.