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The Varsity

The University of Toronto's
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Patrick Chan to attend U of T in fall

Olympic silver medalist to begin program in the Faculty of Arts & Science inSeptember

By Amanda Coletta
Published: 12:50 am, 24 March 2014
Modified: 3 pm, 24 March 2014
Vol CXXXIV, No. 22 under
UPDATED

After deferring his acceptance to U of T’s social sciences program in the Faculty of Arts & Science, Olympic silver medalist Patrick Chan will swap hitting the ice for hitting the books this fall.

“I made the decision to defer my studies after some thought of how to manage school and training for the Olympics simultaneously,” said Chan, adding that he wanted to avoid spreading himself too thin.

Skate Canada:Stephan PotopnykFor Chan, attending U of T has been one of many dreams that he’s managed to realize. “When I was accepted, I knew this was the best opportunity for me,” he said.

Chan admits he sometimes worries that his celebrity status will mean that he is treated differently from his classmates. “I don’t want to be treated differently,” he says. “I want to keep my life outside of the classroom separate. I don’t want to be a distraction for other students or myself.”

As for whether the he plans to hang up the skates for good or continue to skate competitively and pursue the gold medal that has eluded him in Pyeongchang, South Korea, Chan says that it is too early to say for certain.

“My decision to defer was so that I could focus on one thing at a time. I don’t find that I do my best when I’m half here and there. It’s too early to decide,” he explained.

But regardless of whether or not he will represent Canada in four years’ time, Chan has been amazed by the support and congratulatory messages that he has received from Canadians since returning from Sochi.

“I’m happy to celebrate and share this achievement with everyone,” he says. “These medals are as much mine as they are Canada’s,” he added.

Chan, like many young adults, confesses he is not yet entirely sure what he aspires to do once he completes his degree at U of T.

“My life has been unique to this point. I love working with television — maybe I’ll go into media or business,” he said.

But for those young figure skaters who aspire to be like him, Chan offers some simple advice, informed by an illustrious career that has seen him capture seven Canadian National Skating Championships, three World Figure Skating Championships, two Four Continents Championships, two Grand Prix Final titles, the Lou Marsh Award, and two Olympic silver medals.

“It’s important to make sure that every time you step on the ice, you enjoy it and it puts a smile on your face. It’s important that you are in a good environment and one that makes you happy to skate. You don’t want to get involved at a high level unless you really love skating,” he said.

Chan also added that it is important to stay well-rounded. “Competing on the big stage is tough unless you truly love the sport and you are not there for any other reason,” he said.

  • Sarah

    “Asked whether he worries that his celebrity status will mean he is treated differently from the rest of his classmates, Chan says that he sometimes worries that his celebrity status will mean that he is treated differently from them.”

    How well written………………………..

  • Guy

    ” I don’t want to be a distraction for other students” Yeah dude, we’re going to be so distracted by you and your crazy celebrity status. Like he’s James Franco or something. I award Patrick with silver medalist for humblest man of the year.

  • beru

    Congrats P Chiddy! Can’t wait to see you here :)

  • Natalie

    I knew I should’ve chosen U of T instead of Western…

  • Salman Hasan

    Does anyone know which campus he’s attending? I heard the Mississauga one, not sure if that’s true.

  • Descharmes

    Which college? WOODY WOODY WOODY!

  • lee

    Good luck Patrick, we love you so much.

  • Robyn Parklane

    celebrity status..treated differently.. This guy is quite full of himself. Well he has been dethroned by Yuzuru Hanyu.