Inspired by Olympians – A Message from Mike Latham ’86

Related: USA Olympic Swim Team at Punahou

President Mike Latham ’86 shared his thoughts on the USA Olympic Swim team’s time at Punahou and the inspiration we can all gain from watching them reach their full promise.

As Punahou’s president, I want to say how glad we are to have our U.S. Olympic swimmers here. It’s really exciting for Punahou. 

When I first saw them walking onto the campus, I thought there was something about them that seemed almost superhuman, almost extraterrestrial. And then I watched some of their practices and I’ve never seen people move through the water with that speed or that kind of grace and power. That’s really exciting. 

There’s something about that that I really admire. And there are very few people on the face of the earth who have the opportunity to compete at the level that they do to represent their country, to achieve world records, to win Olympic medals. 

What I find even more inspiring, though, is something I think we can all relate to, which is that fundamentally what they’re doing is they’re realizing their full potential. 

They’re taking their talents, they’re taking their gifts, they’re bringing forward the kind of focus and training and discipline and spirit that enables them to do the very best that they can and make the most of what they have. 

And, students, I hope you can think about that too in your own life, in your work, in your own athletics. You too have the opportunity to be inspired by what these athletes achieve. You too have the opportunity to make the very most of what you have, and I want you think about that as you watch them compete, as you watch them achieve. Think about what you can do too in your own lives to make the most of what you have. 

They are in some ways a manifestation of the very best that all of us hope for. So we’re so excited that they’re here. We’re so excited about the example and the inspiration that they set for all of us. So everybody join me in a round of applause for these U.S. Olympians. I hope you will join me in showing them just how much this means to Punahou and how proud we are to be able to have them here.

Think about what you can do too in your own lives to make the most of what you have. 

President Mike Latham ’86

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