Co-Captain Katie Swan ’23 Leads With ‘A Smile on Her Face’

Andover Girls Swimming and Diving Co-Captain Katie Swan ’23 is ranked first in New Hampshire and third in Massachusetts. Through her swimming career, she has continued the legacy of her parents, as they both swam competitively.

“I have been swimming since I could walk (both of my parents were swimmers, that’s actually how they met). Competitively, I have been swimming since I was six years old. I continue because of the people. Honestly. The people I have met through swimming are some of the best people I have ever known,” wrote Swan in an email to The Phillipian

According to teammate Caroline Romano ’26, one of Swan’s strongest assets is her optimism. Swan encourages her teammates to work hard throughout practices, regardless of how tiring it might be.

“She has positive energy… we sometimes just don’t feel like being there and putting in actual effort. And she always just has positivity, even if she doesn’t want to be there. She’s like, ‘Guys, five more rounds, like two rounds, or halfway.’And it makes me actually try… I feel like at least for me, I can really build off of that and feed off of that energy. It’s like how one positive person in the room can make everyone’s day better. That’s kind of how she is in practice,” said Romano. 

Head Coach Paul Murphy ’86 commended Swan on consistently improving upon her event times throughout her four years at Andover. Coach Murphy acknowledged the difficulty of cutting down time, which displays the hard work that Swan has put into each season.

“Katie works hard every single day with a smile on her face… that is who she is. She loves swimming. She actually has gotten faster in her time here, which is… rare. But that has come from hard work. And she’s put her time in. And she leads by example. Both as an athlete but as a person as well. She’s very welcoming to everybody. She is thinking about the new kids. And she’s thinking about the Seniors at the same time,” said Coach Murphy.

Orla Naughton ’25 credited Swan for dedicating time to each member of the team. Her expansive vision also translates to the events she partakes in and how she addresses the team.

“She really expands to the entire team. And she doesn’t just talk to like one grade or one person. She’s really invested in everyone’s swimming and everyone’s goals. And that’s very apparent whether you’re the fastest swimmer on the team or the slowest swimmer on the team. Katie will check in with you, and she’ll cheer for you. And we all do that for her as well,” said Naughton.

As the team heads into the Eastern Interscholastic Swimming and Diving Championship this weekend, Swan addressed her goals for the meet. Last year, Andover placed fifth in Easterns. Recognizing the talent on the team, she looks forward to improving at the competition this year. 

“I think our team is the strongest that I’ve ever seen. I think that we are going to have a lot more new school records, as well as successes in our championship meets… Our championship season is definitely stressful in terms of schoolwork. However, I am so excited to finish off this amazing season with this awesome team. Even though it sounds cliché, I am just hoping to have fun and do our best,” said Swan.

In addition to swimming at Andover, Swan also swims at the Crimson Aquatics Club. Molly MacKinnon ’24 mentioned how Swan is constantly putting in the work to improve during the season at Andover and her club team.

“Katie is always working really hard during practice, and she swims for a club team as well, she’s putting in the work outside of class. So her work ethic is honestly just really inspiring. And you can see how her hard work pays off [on a] daily basis because she’s like an incredibly fast swimmer. She’s always scoring a lot of points for the team in the distance freestyle events, as well as playing a crucial role on a lot of the relay teams that got us a lot of places during meets,” said MacKinnon.

With the new Pan Athletic Center being available to the team, Swan thinks of it as an incentive for each athlete to swim their hardest. 

“Practicing in Pan is such a different experience than practicing in Borden [Memorial Gym]. It’s so bright and big and really helps with our motivation during hard practices. Especially for us Seniors, having just one season in this amazing facility makes us so much more appreciative of the time that we do have in it,” wrote Swan. 

Swan will be continuing her academic and athletic career at Emory University.