Junior Emily Widra came to UR having never rowed a day in her life. Now, two and a half years later, Widra has worked her way up to being a top four member of the rowing team.
This fall, as an upperclassman, Widra helped lead the team to a first place finish in the Challenge of the Canal Regatta, a second place finish in the Head of the Genesee Regatta, and a sixth place finish in the Head of the Charles Regatta this past weekend. A key contributor at all of these races, Wilda rows the five seat, the powerhouse seat, in the varsity eight boat.
What are you majoring in?
English, anthropology, and psychology.
How do you managed your time between rowing and triple majoring?
Well, I’m lucky because English and Anthropology are more papers and essay writing. They’re usually spaced out in a different way than the psychology exams so I don’t feel like I get too overloaded at once.
When did you start rowing?
Freshman year of college.
What led you to join the crew team in college?
My dad went to Rochester and he was on the crew team in the 80s. He introduced me to the coach and convinced me to try out and give it a shot.
What is your favorite part about being on the team?
I like that your hard work in the off-season can be expressed by your success in the spring racing season. You see that your output is what you put into it.
Who has been you biggest influence?
Nicole Felluca, my novice coach. What I like about her and why she’s influential is because my freshman year she was my only coach, and she was really strict and regimental about teaching us the basics. During my sophomore year, I got to know her outside of rowing as well. I learned about how hard she was working to pursue a degree in education in addition to working other jobs. That’s something I aspire to be able to do, in the sense that I hope I can balance crew and other interests.
Why did you choose UR?
I decided that Rochester really gave me the option to focus on what I wanted to learn instead of all the required classes. I also got a very collegiate campus feel when I visited. It made me feel like this was a place I could go for four years.
What goals do you have for the upcoming spring season?
NCAAs [National championships] in Indianapolis.
What is your favorite rowing memory?
My freshman year when we went to Head of the Schuylkill Regatta. I got to race with three experienced freshmen and I was the only novice. We won third place despite it [raining through] the worst weather ever. It was snowing and sleeting and raining.
Do you have any pre-regatta traditions or rituals?
This season, before we race, we do a sun salutation. Before we won the Dad Vail Regatta last spring we were all really anxious and worried about how it would go, and two of the girls in our boat were in a yoga class and decided to lead us in a sun salutation. And then we won that race.
What is the hardest part of being on the rowing team?
Getting up really early in the morning and going out when its 30 degrees outside.
Cozen is a member of the class of 2015.