Maggie Walsh concludes career at Henley Regatta

Maggie Walsh (left) and fellow co-captain Heather Foti accept Northeastern's first place trophy at the May 2017 Colonial Athletic Association Championships. It was the fourth straight CAA Championship for coach Joe Wilhelm’s Huskies.
Maggie Walsh (left) and fellow co-captain Heather Foti accept Northeastern's first place trophy at the May 2017 Colonial Athletic Association Championships. It was the fourth straight CAA Championship for coach Joe Wilhelm’s Huskies.

When Maggie Walsh was looking to challenge herself with a new experience — competitive rowing — the then Trumbull High student couldn’t have predicted how that journey would turn out.

Almost a year removed from meeting with coaches at the Norwalk River Rowing Association to learn about the sport, Walsh signed a letter of intent to row for coach Joe Wilhelm’s Northeastern University (Boston, Mass.) Division I women’s rowing team.

“When recruiting Maggie, we saw raw, unrealized potential,” Wilhelm said. “While she started rowing late in her high school career, we knew that her work ethic and toughness would make her a successful collegiate rower, but that was just the tip of the iceberg.

“Maggie is completely committed to being the best student athlete she can be, and inspires others to do the same. She makes those around her better by bringing them along with her. Her teammates recognized this and voted her captain in both her junior and senior year.

“Her leadership helped cultivate the team culture, which has led to four straight CAA (Colonial Athletic Association) championships and appearances at the NCAA’s.”

Walsh was a member of the first varsity boat in 2016 and 2017. She was also named Collegiate Rowing Coaches Association first-team All-Region and recently competed at the Henley Women's Regatta in England.

"Rowing is as physically and mentally rewarding as it is challenging,” Walsh said. “It has shown me what true discipline and teamwork look like, and I am so glad to have these values as I move forward into the working world."

She is now in Los Angeles, beginning her third business management co-op in human resources. This is her second consecutive position with TJX Companies Inc.

After six months there, she will return to Boston to complete her final academic semester at Northeastern. NU is a five-year school because of the work experience program, so even though her rowing there is done, Walsh has one more year until she graduates in May 2018.

“I wanted to try a sport that was physically demanding. I asked my parents, because my dad Mike rowed at the University of Rhode Island,” Walsh said. “My mom Margaret made it all possible. None of this would happen without her support and I’m so grateful.”

Walsh rowed her senior year at Trumbull High for coach Bryan Pape at Norwalk River Rowing, where they won the Cooper Cup in Varisty 4+,  the Varsity 4+ and Varsity 2- at the Long Island Junior Championships.

NRR earned first place at the Northeast Junior District Championship during her senior year in the Varsity 2-. Walsh also competed in the 2- and 4- at USRowing Youth Nationals.

Walsh worked her way to starting in the 5-seat in the Varsity 8 shell. The middle four, seats 3-6 are the strongest rowers.

“It starts with the coxswain sitting in the stern steering,” Walsh said. “The seats go 8-1 from the back of the boat forward. It’s all about keeping stroke and patterned rhythm.”

In the three seat for Northeastern, Walsh helped the Huskies to a victory over Boston University for the Council Cup with a time of 6:25.948. She sat in the three seat as the 1V captured the silver medal at the Eastern Sprints with a time of 6:52.93 in the Grand Final.

Walsh was the bow seat for the first varsity at the CAA Championships, winning the race by 13 seconds with a time of 6:33.059. In the bow seat, she helped NU to a fifth place finish at the C Final at the NCAA Championships at 6:42.570 to finish 17th in the nation.

In the classroom, Walsh has a 3.85 grade point average in management and social enterprise dual concentration in the D'Amore-McKim School of Business honors program, where she has been a perennial Dean's List student.

In addition, she has been a three-time CRCA National Scholar Athlete, a three time CAA Commissioner’s Award winner, and was also named one of Northeastern's prestigious Huntington 100, which is based on criteria that are commensurate with the University's mission, ideals, values and academic plan.

The selection committee considered students for their impact on the campus community, record of service, global engagement, demonstrated leadership, entrepreneurial spirit, and commitment to the ideals and values of Northeastern.

A member of the Executive Board of Northeastern's Student-Athlete Advisory Committee, Walsh has also been a fixture in the community throughout her career on Huntington Avenue.

She has been a three-year member of Northeastern's Social Enterprise Institute, the hub for social entrepreneurship housed in the D'Amore-McKim School of Business grounded in the belief that business can be a powerful tool in helping to alleviate poverty in the developing world by utilizing enterprise based solutions.

In addition to being part of the Honors Program and a member of the Dean's List, Walsh was also a BizKids Group Leader through the Social Enterprise Institute and a member of the Jumpstart Corps, a 300-hour commitment.