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Joaquin Chapa
[2003]

School: Grant

Sports Played: Cross Country, Track and Field

High School Honors: 4-year Track letterman, 800-meter PIL champion, soph.; 1500-meter and 4x400 relay PIL champion, junior; 800-meter, 4x400 relay and 1500-meter PIL champion and State champion, senior. Grant record holder in 800m and 1500m. 4-year Cross Country letterman, team 2nd in State, senior.

Post High School Career: Two-time All-American for Stanford University, 2004 and 2005. On NCAA championship CC team, 2003. Enrolled University of Oregon, Spring, 2007; Graduated Stanford, winter 2007. On Oregon NCAA CC championship team, 2007. Academic All-American. U of Chicago Med School, final year.

Commentary:

My years running for Grant in the PIL were my formative years as an athlete. And my time as an athlete was really the formative time that set up how I approach life. What I learned to find a great amount of joy and satisfaction in during my time at Grant was the simple process of setting a goal, pouring every bit of yourself into achieving it, and every day trying to transcend the "you" that existed yesterday.

I was lucky enough to have tremendously generous coaches at Grant to help me reach my goals, but luckier still to have had coaches who helped me see the bigger picture: that individual success is hollowed out when it isn't shared with the teammates with whom you train and laugh and grow every day, and who are the guys going out and putting everything on the line with you on race day.

When I look back at my time in the PIL, it truly is the relay victories, the team championships, and the days when everyone set personal records that make me smile, still, and it's the relationships with those people that are the most important thing I've taken from my competitive experience in high school.

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