MIT Women's Swimming and Diving
The 2006 NEWMAC Women's Swimming Coach of the Year, Dawn Gerken enters her fifth season as the head coach of the men's and women's swimming and diving programs. She has led both teams to a total of four Top 20 NCAA Championship team finishes, six NEWMAC runner-up titles and 30 All-America performances.
During the past two seasons, the MIT swimming and diving program has reached new heights. At both the 2006 and 2007 NCAA Championships, the MIT women's swimming & diving team placed 20th, earning their highest national finish in 17 years. Diver Doria Holbrook was crowned the NCAA champion on the three-meter springboard and named to ESPN's All-America First Team, while distance swimmer Kate Thornton earned Honorable Mention All-America honors in the 500 and 1,650 Freestyle. At the 2007 Men's NCAA Championships, the relay team of Craig Edwards, Rastislav Racz, Jeff Zhou and Luke Cummings took sixth in both the 200 and 400 medley relays. Racz and Edwards also combined for four Top Eight All-America finishes, carrying the Institute to an 11th place team finish.
The 2004-2005 season was also one of the most successful seasons in the history of the program. After winning the national title on the three-meter springboard, Doria Holbrook and diving coach Brad Snodgrass were named the NCAA Division III Diver and Diving Coach of the Year, respectively. At the men's NCAA meet, seven swimmers represented MIT and placed 10th (the highest team finish since 1984). All five of Tech's relays finished in the Top 10 in the country (fourth in 400 MR, fifth in 200 MR, ninth in 400 FR, 10th in 200 FR and 800 FR). The team earned 15 All-America honors and five Academic All-America honors.
In her rookie season (2003-2004), Gerken guided both the men and women's programs to runner-up finishes at the NEWMAC Championships. After establishing nine meet records, MIT swimmers Kathryn Duffy and Craig Edwards each received NEWMAC Swimmer of the Year accolades. Team members established 17 new Institute records and 14 swimmers made NCAA "A" and "B" qualifying standards. Five swimmers competed at the NCAA Division III Championships where the women placed 45th and the men finished 25th.
Before her arrival at MIT, Gerken coached at Vassar College from 2001-2003, one season as an assistant coach and one season as the interim head coach. Under her tutelage, the Brewers broke 23 school records during the 2002-03 campaign. Prior to Vassar, Gerken served as a graduate assistant coach for the Smith College swimming and diving program from 1999-2001. Gerken was also an assistant coach for the University of Massachusetts women's swimming and water polo teams in 1998-99.
Gerken received a bachelor's degree from Smith College in 1996 and also received an M.S. in Exercise and Sport Studies from her alma mater in 2001. A seven-time All-America in the 100 and 200 breaststroke, she was named the New England Swimmer of the Year in 1996. Gerken was a seven-time New England champion in the 50, 100 and 200 breaststroke and an eight-time Seven Sisters champion. She was also honored as both an Academic All-America and ECAC Scholar Athlete in 1995.
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