For William Mahone, receiving both a general merit academic scholarship and an athletic scholarship gives him motivation to always do his best.
“It gives me a purpose, or an incentive, to just do better,” said Mahone. “I’m here on this great scholarship, so I have to prove myself and do better for my team.”
Mahone has already proven himself by making University of Montevallo history. In the spring of 2023, Mahone became the first UM swimmer to qualify for the NCAA Division II National Championship.
At the championship, Mahone managed to place eighth in the 200-yard backstroke and 16th in the 100-yard backstroke. He described being on the national collegiate competition stage as surreal.
“When I first got there, I just stood there. All I could think was ‘Wow, I’m here right now.’ Like…this is crazy,” he said.
Mahone has been swimming competitively since his sophomore year of high school. In 2019, he became one of the founding members of the inaugural UM men’s swimming team.
He describes the team culture as one of constant fun.
“It’s been so cool to watch the team grow the way that it has,” Mahone said.
When he’s not in the pool, Mahone excels as an exercise and nutrition science major with a concentration in allied health. After graduation, he plans to become a traveling nurse.
Mahone is the men’s swimming team representative for the Student Athlete Advisory Council and is also a member of the Exercise Science Club and UM’s chapter of The Hidden Opponent, a nonprofit focused on raising awareness about mental health struggles in athletics.
“To all the alumni out there, I just so much appreciate their time and their financial support going into these programs. I mean, I think it’s awesome,” Mahone said. “And I know there are students who really appreciate it.”
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