For the month of January, The Current chose boy’s varsity swimming captain Jean Quinde as athlete of the month. Although swimming is one of the winter sports that has been cleared to practice and compete, there is a caveat—meets between schools are virtual. As such, teams compete from their respective facilities, adding another layer of complexity to competitions this season. While the format of meets have changed, the approach to scoring has stayed the same— the times posted are used to determine the winner of heats and the final scores of each team are compared at the end of the meet to determine the winner. Earlier this year, The Current got a chance to speak with Quinde about his season, goals, and how he has adjusted to a season unlike any other. Here’s what Quinde had to say.
Cameron Takmil: How do you feel about becoming senior captain this year and do you have any personal goals for yourself throughout this season?
Jean Quinde: I feel very excited about being senior captain this year and I have set some personal goals of getting lower time on my events.
CT: With the COVID-19 pandemic, how has it been to adjust to virtual swimming meets and COVID-19 regulations?
JQ: With the first virtual swim meet being tomorrow Friday, [January] 23, it’s [going to] feel weird for all of us but I believe that we can do it just the same as any other meet. Although the biggest inconvenience will be our masks being wet.
CT: What made you start swimming and how has it led to this point?
JQ: This one is quite funny as I was forced to do swimming as a sport when I was little by my parents and I believe it has had a very positive impact on me by keeping me in shape and keeping me motivated especially during COVID-19.
CT: As a captain, how do you think it will be like to be one of the leaders of the team during the pandemic
JQ: I think being one of the leaders during this pandemic is probably the best thing since you’ll be there to motivate your team and hype them up to keep them swimming and motivated. A loss of [a] crowd and adrenaline that comes with competing against another team is something that has been lost this year due to the pandemic. [This] is a good example of why the leaders are important and how we’ll help the team.
CT: Do you have any aspirations to swim competitively after high school?
JQ: I’ve asked myself multiple times if I’ve wanted to continue swimming competitively after high school and I’ve always come to the decision that I’d rather swim for fitness and fun instead of for competition. I will miss the adrenaline and the cheering but swimming in general is fun and that’s enough to keep me motivated.