Ordinary people can achieve extraordinary success by living life in the moment and being the best they can be. That’s part of the message Olympic swimming champion Mark Tewksbury will deliver to students at UBC Okanagan when he visits the campus on February 13.
Tewksbury, who recently published a book called “Inside Out: Straight talk from a gay jock,” burst onto the scene at the Barcelona Olympics with a gold medal victory in the 100-metre backstroke. He would retire with Olympic gold, silver and bronze medals and become a national hero both in and out of the swimming pool.
Campus Life Coordinator Leanne Perry helped organize Tewksbury’s visit to UBC Okanagan as part of Outweek — a week of events to raise awareness of lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender (LGBT) issues. Other events for the week include readings, information booths, and a healthy queer relationships workshop.
“OutWeek is for everyone and is about educating and celebrating our diverse population,” says Perry. “Through our campus life program, we hope to encourage positive social change and continue creating a welcoming environment at the university. Mark Tewksbury’s presentation here will cover important themes about working for social change and leaving one’s mark – creating a legacy.”
Tewksbury’s rousing presentations use personal anecdotes to illustrate lessons learned in his own life, notably through his global involvement with the Olympics and his humanitarian work outside the sports arena.
Often described as charismatic and engaging, Tewksbury is a human rights advocate and spokesperson, and has hosted TV shows including Discovery Channel’s ‘How It’s Made.’
Tewksbury’s presentation to students will be in the UBC Okanagan gymnasium from 11 a.m. to 12 noon on Tuesday, Feb. 13.
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