Liam Leddy to Land at University of Chicago
ATA College Prep senior Liam Leddy will pursue higher education and athletic aspirations at the University of Chicago this coming fall, where he will compete as a Maroon on the varsity men’s tennis team.
“Overall, I chose Chicago because it offers me the opportunity to study at a highly reputable institution among people who are all uniquely intellectual, and also to pursue a national championship,” Leddy said.
Liam also applied to Trinity College in Connecticut, Macalester College in St. Paul, Stanford, Austin College in Sherman, and Claremont McKenna.
He explained that it was the schools reputation for being a bit quirky while maintaining high academic standards that caught his interest.
“The people at Chicago are all a little bit different and that appealed to me,” Liam said. “I’ve always been a little bit different myself (I think), so going to a school that embraced and celebrated that really did, and still does, excite me.”
The University of Chicago campus is located in the city’s Hyde Park neighborhood on Lake Michigan. The 215-acre campus was designated as a botanic garden in 1997. It boasts a blend of English Gothic and award-winning modern buildings.
“I visited campus the summer after my sophomore year, and found it quite beautiful,” Liam said. “The mix of modern and gothic architecture is actually quite interesting. Of course, it was in summer, so everything was actually green, but nonetheless I loved it.”
Liam will enter a highly competitive and nationally recognized academic environment. The roughly 5 thousand undergraduate students all choose from 50 offered majors and 29 minors. The university is among the leaders in areas like Law, Economics and the Sciences.
“I’m most excited academically about finding out what I actually want to major in,” Liam said. “I have some vague ideas, but I’m not positive. At Chicago students spend their first four semesters completing “the core”, which Chicago is known for. I hope that having such a rigorous and thorough set of freshman and sophomore classes will allow me to investigate career options more proficiently.”
Liam joins a Maroon’s men’s tennis team that reached the quarterfinals of the University Athletic Association Men’s Tennis Championships in 2012. The team finished with an 11-9 overall record, after finishing the tournament in 5th place.
“Athletically, I’m really excited to be joining a team that’s top 15 in DIII, and really wants to win a national championship,” Liam said. “When I visited campus again this past October, Coach Bertrand and all the guys on the team made it clear that their goal was nothing less than winning the national championship. So joining a team that is very competitive and willing to sacrifice to succeed is really awesome and exciting. That’s something I feel like I have at ATA; all the coaches are very competitive and want the students to win. I feel like that’s been very valuable to me, and I didn’t want to lose it in college.”
Liam joined ATA and started playing tennis just before turning 14. He moved up through the Junior Development program all the way to ATA College Prep.
“Being in the College Prep program has been great,” Liam said. “I already have to manage training at a high level with college level classes, so hopefully that will ease my transition into college.”
The ATA community is invited to join Liam, and teammate Eliot Blatt, as we celebrate their college choices at the ATA Signing Ceremony at 6pm in the Fitness Center.
From ATA CEO Jack Newman –
“Liam started tennis late. He started in a PE class we offered for home-schooled kids. Josh Hagar was one of Liam’s first coaches. That was in the fall of 2007. Liam caught the tennis bug and has worked consistently hard since then to become an accomplished super champ player. When you start late like Liam, it is challenging. You are often training with smaller, younger kids and that can be annoying. That did not deter Liam. He worked his way up through the Texas competitive system and he worked his way up through the ATA system. Liam is headed to the university of Chicago, one of the most challenging academic environments in the country. The same determination and work ethic that allowed Liam to reach this level of accomplishment will allow him to continue that improvement and success in college.”
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