OSU grad student swimming in the Olympics for third time
Tuesday, August 24, 2021
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Angelika Ouedraogo jumped into the pool on July 30 looking to join a select group of people who call themselves three-time Olympians.
Ouedraogo, an Oklahoma State University doctoral student and researcher studying Biosystems and Agricultural Engineering, competed for Burkina Faso at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, which were postponed an entire year because of COVID-19.
“I love how kind everyone is at OSU,” Ouedraogo said. “The faculty, staff and students are so friendly and always ready to help. That is so precious to me!”
Ouedraogo participated in the 50-meter freestyle competition, where she placed 58th at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.
In her previous Olympiads, she placed 63rd the 2012 London Olympics and 67th in the 2016 Summer Games in Rio De Janeiro, where she was the West African country’s flag bearer during the Closing Ceremonies.
“Being a part of the Olympics is every athlete’s dream,” Ouedraogo said. “My first time competing at the Olympics, I was excited and proud to represent my country, but also nervous because it’s the biggest competition for athletes.”
Ouedraogo competes in the FINA World Championships when she is not preparing for the Olympics and placed in the top 25 at the 12th African Games in 2019 in the 50-meter freestyle and is a top 10 finisher for the 50-meter breaststroke.
The FINA World Championships are the global competition for aquatic sports and take place in various places such as South Korea, Hungary, Russia, Canada and China.
Ouedraogo started swimming in primary school when her teacher left an application for swim lessons in her backpack and began swimming competitively in 2006. She joined the Burkina Faso national team in 2009. While at OSU, she trained with the King Marlin Swim Club at their 25-meter pool in Oklahoma City and occasionally with Norman’s Sooner Swim Club in their 50-meter pool.
“I feel as if I am in another world when I swim,” Ouedraogo said. “I believe swimming chose me.”