The University of Colorado Colorado Springs (UCCS) calls Olympic City USA home — and for good reason. UCCS-affiliated Olympic athletes brought home six of Team USA’s 113 medals in the pandemic-delayed Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games.
In fact, if the university were its own country, its athletes would have placed 42nd in the Games overall, ahead of nations like Greece, Ethiopia, Uganda and Ireland.
Two UCCS Olympians brought home gold medals: Amber English ’12, who earned gold in women’s skeet shooting, and Jennifer Valente, a current junior in the College of Engineering and Applied Sciences, who earned gold in the women’s track cycling omnium event. Valente also went on to win a bronze medal in the track cycling team pursuit event.
In addition, Margie Hunt, Senior Instructor in the UCCS Helen and Arthur E. Johnson Beth-El College of Nursing and Health Sciences, served as an athletic trainer and provided medical support for the USA Basketball Women’s 3×3 team. Her efforts contributed to their gold medal.
The medals just kept coming. Kevin McDowell ’16, a triathlete, earned silver in the mixed relay and sixth place overall in the men’s individual event, securing the time for the best men’s U.S. triathlon finish ever in the Olympic Games. And Addie Gray, who completed coursework at the university, won silver in the women’s freestyle wrestling event.
Notably, Maddie Godby ’18 also competed in the finals for the women’s track cycling keirin and sprint events, and Mark Misch, head men’s cross country coach and assistant track and field coach, served as distance coach for the Estonian National Team, where he oversaw marathon runners Tiidrek Nurme and Roman Fosti.
Learn more about UCCS’ Olympians below. For complete Games information, including full results, visit the official Olympic Games website.
Result: Gold in women’s skeet shooting
Event(s): Women’s skeet
UCCS Graduation Year: 2012
Major: Health Care Science with paramedic certification
Notable: First lieutenant with the Army’s World Class Athlete Program
Learn more about Amber
Result: Gold in the women’s omnium
Event(s): Track cycling – Team Pursuit, Omnium, & Madison
UCCS Graduation Year: Junior
Major: Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering
Notable: Featured in the Communique earlier this summer. Click here to read more.
Learn more about Jennifer
Games Role: Athletic Trainer on the USOPC/USA Basketball support staff providing medical support for the USA Basketball Women’s 3×3 team
Result: The women’s 3×3 team won gold
UCCS Role: Senior Instructor in the Helen and Arthur E. Johnson Beth-El College of Nursing and Health Sciences
Learn more about Margie
Result: Silver in the mixed relay and sixth place in the men’s individual event
Events: Men’s individual event, mixed relay
UCCS Graduation Year: ’16
Major: Business Administration
Notable: Cancer survivor and Youth Olympic Games silver medalist
Learn more about Kevin
Result: Silver in the women’s freestyle event
Event(s): Women’s freestyle (76 kg.)
Year: Attended UCCS in 2014
Notable: 2016 U.S. Olympian
Learn more about Addie online
Valente also won bronze in the team pursuit (track cycling).
Event(s): Track cycling – Keirin and Sprint
Result: Competed in the finals for both Keirin and Sprint
Major: Health Promotion
Learn more about Maddie online
Games Role: Distance coach for the Estonian National Team, overseeing marathon runners Tiidrek Nurme and Roman Fosti. Misch also coaches the U.S. alternate in the steeplechase, Dan Michalski.
UCCS Role: Head men’s cross country coach and assistant track and field coach
Learn more about Mark online