Today we connect over the far waters with East London born Marne Erasmus. A very fine Proudly South African “Export” who is currently studying in the US at the Southern Methodist University. Marne is doing brilliant there, she is dedicated, hard working and we look much forward to seeing her next month in fine form and top gear as she steps back onto African soil to come and compete at Olympic trials in Durban starting 10 April.
She says “I am humble and caring but also strong and independent”. “I don’t see my life decisions as sacrifices. I see them as opportunities. I have been very fortunate to have had the experiences that I have in life. To me it is most important to remain humble and not lose who I am along the way. It is easy to get swept up in prestige but I do not want that for myself”.
Athlete: Bio / Stats
|Name & Surname||Marne Erasmus|
|Date of birth||May 23rd 1995|
|Place of birth||East London, Eastern Cape, South Africa|
|Current City||Dallas, Texas, USA|
|Coach’s Name||Steve Collins|
|Out of Country events/ meets||World championships (long course and short course), commonwealth games (youth and senior), NCAA (American college national championship), Zone six African games|
|Secondary Sport/ sports||Netball, tennis, yoga|
|Favorite City||Cape Town|
|Favorite Song/ type of music||Indie/alternative|
|Favorite Movie||The Brother’s Bloom|
|School & Grade||Junior (3rd year)|
|Tertiary Inst Name/ Year||Southern Methodist University|
|Tertiary degree/ diploma||Major in political science and history, minor in religious studies and English|
|Parents Names, siblings||Marco, Sarisa & Anri, Greyling|
Q: You are currently studying and swimming at Southern Methodist University Dallas, passionate and doing so well in your swimming tell me a little bit about how you started in swimming and your journey in the swimming arena up to now?
I started swimming when I was two years old as my mother wanted my sister and me to be water safe. Many babies drowned in our city around the time that I was born, so my mother wanted to do everything that she could to keep myself and my sister from coming to any harm. So I started at age two and am still going at age 20.
Q: What is the highest accolade that you have achieved in swimming and what is your greatest personal accomplishment?
I won a gold medal at the youth commonwealth games in 2010 but I think my proudest moment was when I won a bronze medal at the NCAA in my freshman year.
Q: In your opinion, what is the value of Education in a young person’s life?
Education is one of the most important things in any one person’s life. It is so important that the younger generations be well educated so that they may grow up to be generous and well informed leaders.
Q: Would you like to share a little bit more about your faith journey and how it has affected your life / sports?
I have had a very interesting journey with faith, one that I am still trying to figure out. I do not believe that people should be restricted to any one faith and that many people find spiritual fulfilment in a number of different religious and spiritual practices. Our social settings and cultural surroundings often nudge us into one direction, but it is important to identify what makes you happy and whole. Personally, I have changed a lot since I left home and I do believe that I became a happier and more fulfilled person due to the realization that my faith is something that I need to truly believe in for it to be my faith. At the moment, I’m not quite sure what that is.
Q: You are living overseas at the moment, what does it feel like?
I love living in Dallas. I think it I an amazing place to study and be a young person and I have definitely learned a lot and matured during my stay here. Dallas will always hold a very special place in my heart as it is where some of my fondest memories as a young adult have been fostered.
Q: What do you do to relax?
Go out with friends or sleep! Mostly we’re so tired that we just try and relax.
Q: What is your personal favourite motivational quote?
The best time to plant a tree was 20 years ago. The second best time is now. – Chinese Proverb
Q: What is your biggest challenge, and what do you do to manage this challenge?
Staying calm in time when my schedule is overwhelming and I feel like I’ve committed to more than I can handle. When I get to this point in the semester I try to stay organized and get to the most important things first. I’d rather do a few things to the best of my ability than do everything half-heartedly.
Q: In your opinion, how do you define success in life?
If you are content within yourself and your own personal achievements; you are successful!
Q: What’s your WHY?
I do what I do because I’ve been blessed with a talent that I cannot neglect. I’m very interested in the relationship between politics and religion in war torn areas such as the Middle East and North Africa, so ideally I would like to work for an NGO or an IGO in matters concerning women and children’s rights. I’m not sure if I’ll head home anytime soon… I want to travel and work in different places first, but who knows what the future holds?
Q: What is your message of encouragement to South African and youth of the world?
Never let your circumstances define you. You are capable of more than you think! Always do what makes you happy, regardless of popular opinion or external pressures.
Thank you so much for taking this interview. We would like to wish you all the best for your journey ahead. We look forward to following you as you go from strength to strength. Blessings!
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