The 400m Phenom

Jack Cahill '17, Sports Editor

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I remember my brothers coming home from school one day. They just had a recreational track meet at school. As they ran through the door, they shouted, “Kami Hickson is amazing. She is going division one and will be in the Olympics.”

The thing is, this was in elementary school back in 2011.

Now, Kami Hickson, a high school freshman, has already achieved more than most high school athletes could ever dream of. Over her ten-year track career, she has amassed ten plus national medals, four of which are gold, an all-south jersey selection, a group four state championship, an All-American selection, and top four finish in the 800m at the New Balance nationals meet. Hickson also recorded the fastest time in South Jersey and third fastest in the state.

“Qualifying for the New Balance meet has been the most prestigious moment in my career. All high school runners strive to make it there, and to make it as a freshman is really exciting,” said Hickson.

Hickson’s path to success in track was anything but ordinary. One day after kindergarten, she brought home a flyer about running track to her mother and told her she wanted to run. Her mother agreed and started looking to recreational track teams in the area. Hickson decided to specialize in the 400 meter and 800 meter. Soon after establishing herself as a local standout, Hickson moved on to the national level.

“So many people have been in my corner during my career. My dad (a former high school track star) has always been my biggest inspiration and first coach,” said Hickson.

Hickson has always been very proud of her dad, and strives each day to be like him. Even though she has a coach, her dad is the first person she goes to for advice.

Being a successful freshman can create its own pressures. For Hickson, she uses that pressure is a motivator for her to succeed.

“You have to appreciate the opportunity that you are given,” said Hickson. “You have to be aware that not everyone gets these opportunities and realize that, at any moment, it can be taken away.”

Hickson’s mindset is humble. Even though she has achieved so much, Hickson remains focused on her career and keeping life in perspective.

“I thank God every day for my success and value the support my teammates have given me. I know they always have my back.”

Hickson and her teammates push each other to perform at their highest potential. She recognizes them as a critical part of her success.

Hickson’s ceiling is very high. The 2020 Olympic trials and hopes of getting a division one scholarship are on currently on her radar. She anticipates that success on those fronts would open her up to running professionally. People will soon be saying the same things my brothers did back in 2011.

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The 400m Phenom