09 Jul Mallory Weggemann
Speaker: Mallory Weggemann
Paralympic Gold Medalist & Inspiration
Speech Topics Include:
- Personal Story: Everything happens for a Reason (includes moving anecdotes from personal journal
- You’re the Best, you can make a Difference, and you can Change the World
2012 Paralympic Gold Medalist Mallory Weggemann had her life changed on January 21, 2008. A routine epidural to help treat back pain left the college freshman paralyzed from the waist down. However, having been a competitive swimmer since the age of seven, she found one thing unchanged – her love for swimming. On April 8, 2008, Mallory returned to the pool, and has been breaking national and world records ever since. However, just days before the 2012 Paralympics, a controversial decision to move Mallory up a class left her competing against swimmers with full use of their legs. Nonetheless, she defied the odds and won Gold in the 50m freestyle, which became one of the signature races during the Games.
Personal Story: Everything happens for a Reason (includes moving anecdotes from personal journal)-
Mallory discusses the day in which she became paralyzed, her initial struggles to cope, and how she soon realized she now had a platform to instill change by helping others and raising awareness for swimmers with disabilities. Mallory shares a touching story of how she changed the life of a young girl who is also paralyzed — an opportunity which allowed her to fully understand why “everything happens for a reason.”
You’re the Best, you can make a Difference, and you can Change the World
The phrase spoken to Mallory and her sisters by her father every night before they went to bed, is something which Mallory lives by today. Mallory emphasizes that everyone goes through struggles, and everyone has some sort of “disability,” some of them just not as obvious as hers. Yet, everyone has the ability to overcome their “disabilities” and make a difference (big or small) in the world.