U.S women’s eight wins second straight gold, but that’s not the most impressive thing about them

Maggie Hendricks
Fourth-Place Medal

The U.S. women's eight rowing team won gold on Thursday, continuing a dominating run that includes two golds and a silver over the last eight years. Led by coxswain Mary Whipple, a tiny dynamo who keeps her team focused, the team hasn't lost a race in eight years. They beat Canada, the silver medalists, by more than a second.

[Photos: Olympic rowing]

An undefeated run lasting since Beijing is impressive on its own. But it grows more impressive when you take a look at each rower's academic credentials.

Caryn Davies has a bachelor's from Harvard and is pursuing a law degree from Columbia. Caroline Lind graduated from Princeton then earned a master's degree in accounting from Rider. Esther Lofgren has a degree in economics from Harvard. Susan Francia has a bachelor's and a master's degree from Penn. Stanford, Cal-Berkeley and Yale are also represented on this team. Several of the rowers have postgraduate degrees.

If you're looking for role models for your children, introduce them to the women's eight.

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