A Camosun College student will be going for gold at the 2020 Tokyo Summer Olympics this year.
Julia Greenshields, a bachelor of sport and fitness leadership student at Camosun in Victoria, will be competing as a member of the Canadian women’s national rugby team this year, according to a press release from the college.
Heading out for her first Olympics is a big milestone in her life. But her dream wasn’t lifelong until a high school field trip.
“It’s funny because I never had that Olympic dream, I didn’t play sports when I was growing up and neither did anyone in my family,” she said.
“When I was in high school in Sarnia, in Ontario, I heard about a class field trip to North Carolina and really wanted to go. I was told I had to play rugby, and I didn’t even know what that was, but I said ‘sign me up, let’s play rugby then,’ because I really wanted to go to North Carolina!”
The trip would set her on a completely different athletic course, eventually moving from Ontario to B.C. to train for the last decade with the rugby team in Victoria.
The Olympics will feel different this year because of the pandemic, and no cheering crowds will be present.
“What I’m most disappointed about is that my family won’t be able to come with me and be there to watch,” she said. “But I do hope to continue and compete in the next Olympics in Paris and I’ve told them—you’re going to come and watch me play then!”
While Greenshields is looking forward to going to the Olympics, she isn’t quite sure how she feels and thinks she won’t know until she leaves.
“I don’t know if it’s hit me yet—I’m anxious and nervous and excited and focussed on training like we always do,” said Greenshields. “I think the reality of it all will set in when we’re all actually at the airport.”
The Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games run from Jul. 23 – Aug. 8, 2021.