Student-Athlete Spotlight

Patrick Hally, ENG'18 - Men's Track & Field/Cross Country

1. Name: Patrick Hally

2. Class Year: 2018

3. Sport: Men's Track & Field/Cross Country

4. Position: Distance Runner

5. Why did you choose Penn?
I chose Penn for many reasons. I am originally from Delaware so staying close was a big selling point for me because it feels like home. Another huge reason was for the academic and athletic excellence of the school. The Penn name is well known and has a rich history in both academics and athletics. I wanted to add to that history. I am a big Philadelphia sports fan so I am very familiar with the phrase “Trust the Process.” Coming into my Freshman year, I could see the promise and potential of the program. I wanted to be a part of bringing it back to excellence. Through hard work, we did just that — qualifying for the NCAA Championships and winning an Ivy League title.

6. What does being a Penn Track & Field/XC student-athlete mean to you?
It means the world to me. The team is really like a family for many reasons. We do everything together, we all live together, and we all bring different things to the table. As a member of this team, I have met some of the brightest and most talented people; many of which I will call lifelong friends. It also is motivating that the Penn Track and Field family goes beyond just the current students. Whenever I talk to alumni, it is always incredible to see how they follow every meet and still care so much about the program no matter how long they have been out of school. It is really inspiring to be a part of something that is bigger than myself.

7. What would you say to the donors who invest in your experience as a Penn Track & Field/XC student-athlete?
Thank you. It would be impossible for us to do what we do without your help. I want you to know that we are working hard to push ourselves to reach our athletic potential. Big things are going to continue for this program. I think I speak for the rest of the seniors when I say that we all feel like this program is set up very nicely for continued success even without us next year. We all appreciate your investment in us and we hope that we are making you proud.

8. What has been your favorite moment/memory with Penn Track & Field/XC?
There have been so many great moments, but the one that will always stick with me is qualifying for the Cross-Country NCAA championships for the first time in 40 years during my Sophomore year. We were frustrated coming off a tough second place finish at the Ivy League Championships two weeks prior. However, we went into this race knowing that no one was going to stop us from making Nationals. The intensity and mental fortitude we showed on that day continues to be an inspiration for me. Finding out we had qualified was one of the most exciting moments of my life. It was incredible to celebrate being a part of that moment. It was a total team effort and just a phenomenal day overall.

9. What does life after Penn look like?
I don’t have definite plans for next year, but I would love to stay in the Philadelphia area. Philly has really become a home for me and I would love to continue to live here. I will graduate this spring with a Chemical Engineering degree and a minor in Energy and Sustainability. My dream is to work in the energy and sustainability field to try to work to make a cleaner future for the planet. I am especially interested in renewable energies and trying to make them more profitable so that they can replace conventional fuel sources.

10. What are some lessons that you have learned through athletics at Penn that will stay with you after graduation?
Hard work, teamwork, and patience are the three major things I have learned from my athletic career at Penn. Nothing is possible without the desire and work ethic to accomplish it. You cannot accomplish anything without involving the people around you. A team will always be stronger than just an individual. Building great relationships with the people around you is vital to success in life. You also need to have patience in whatever you do. Running like life has its ups and downs. I have had my fair share of seasons cut short and this requires the ability to bounce back and trust the process; good things will come if you continue to work hard