As I write this in April of 2014, looking at the content below, we’re very thankful for the last three years in New Zealand. The experience itself has been, at the least, unorthodox. We’re sending kids from one completely different rowing culture to another – potentially from one of the more proprietarily oriented rowing countries to one of the least (though it still exists, no question!) They’re choosing to go from Summer into Winter. They’re also choosing to row 100K and more a week in pursuit of their own goals, the by product of which is a 2K score – but the end product of which has as much to do with rowing as it has to do with life.
Going abroad to pursue something one’s passionate about allows you to experience the sport (in this case) in a completely difference perspective thanks to cultural differences. We feel lucky to be in New Zealand – it is a very different place from the US, but we haven’t had anyone leave uncharmed – they believe they’re going for the rowing and the scenery and they come back raving about the personal lessons from the culture and the people. Sport should create better people; results don’t matter unless it does. Some of our junior rowers and coxswains have had life changing experiences in New Zealand and we’re thankful to be a part of it.