Andrew Cronholm

The senior’s swim career began when his father tossed Cronholm, then nine years old, off the family’s 33-foot sailboat. The sink-or-swim moment actually ignited his passion for the sport, and more than a decade later, the three-year swim team captain ranks in the top five Drew swimmers of all time in five events.

By Meghan Van Dyk C’07

When Cronholm was a sophomore, there were two men on the team. Now, there are 12. Coach Dorsi Raynolds attributes this to the sheer force of his personality: “His endless energy is the reason the team has grown so quickly.” Photo by Bill Cardoni

Why do I love swimming? Three reasons.

One: Passion. My dad taught me that sailing is an art form. It takes a lot of hard work and dedication and an understanding that there is always something new to learn. That’s how I feel about swimming. Two: Swimming is such a rush. It’s like you’re in a different world as you’re speeding down a lane, then your whole body gets jerked back into reality the second you hit the wall. And then the pain hits you all over. Three: I like being in an aquatic environment. I even like studying the water as an environmental science minor. I want to go into environmental law.

Three things I don’t like.

Chlorine: The smell seeps into your skin, and it doesn’t go away. Pruney fingers: No matter how often you’re in the pool, your fingers always get pruney just like when you were little and took a bath. Speedos: They’re uncomfortable for obvious reasons, but you get over the awkwardness pretty quickly.

As Drew’s swim co-captain, I’m pretty extreme.

I love to jump up and down, yell and scream on the pool deck. It gets my teammates psyched up and keeps everyone laughing. Coach [Dorsi Raynolds] and I decided I would compete in all 12 events at the University of Scranton meet as a way to train—usually, you do four. I just did a race, did a little dance, got back on the block, then dove right in. Afterward, I got sick.

When I’m out of the pool, I’m most likely in the library.

I probably spend about 20 hours a week in the library, 30 during exam time. I can’t study in my room—the library is a great quiet place to get stuff done. And, of course, any extra moment I have I like to spend with my girlfriend, Abby [Calhoun], who I met on the swim team.

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