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Sophomore Carmen Botha is a hurdler on the women’s track and field team from Tzaneen, Limpopo, South Africa. (Hillsdale College Ath­letics | Courtesy)

Q: How did you find Hillsdale?

CB: Basi­cally I just found Hillsdale through a recruiting process and then I really liked the school from what I could see on the website. I didn’t come for a visit or any­thing. And I thought, “Well this looks like a really cute school and looks like it would suit me.” So I just decided to come here and I really like my decision.

 

Q: What are you looking forward to most this season?

CB: Def­i­nitely the outdoor season, doing 400 meter hurdles, and then the 100 meter hurdles because that’s a lot of fun. And I love doing the 4x400 meter relay because that’s with a team and all the pressure is not on you specif­i­cally and it’s more spread across the whole team. And it’s kind of more fun because in the beginning you are all stressed together and anxious together.

 

Q: How was the adjustment coming from South Africa to Michigan?

CB: First of all the weather is way dif­ferent. This is my second real winter ever. Before coming to Hillsdale I had never seen snow before. It snows a lot here and it’s really cold. Last week when we had neg­a­tives, people were warning me to not stay outside too long or you’ll get frostbite. That would never happen back home. And then the talking is dif­ferent. You guys use a lot of dif­ferent phrases than we do to describe things.

 

Q: What’s some­thing you miss most about home?

CB: Probably all the animals. We have a ton of animals and I grew up on a farm, so we have a lot of dogs and farm animals. And then we also have a game farm which is like a farm of wild animals. So I’m used to being able to see more wild animals and have more pets. That’s one of the things I probably miss the most about home. And obvi­ously I miss my family a lot.

 

  • Alexan­derYp­si­lantis

    I’ve traveled a lot on business and pleasure, but I’ve never been to South Africa. Would love to go some day. Seems like a fas­ci­nating place with the wildlife pre­serves.