Springboard For Success

suc cess ful (adjective): with record of significant achievements

Naomi Clayton '16

Naomi Clayton ’16 wraps up her collegiate career in May 2020 graduating from Denison University. She graduates with significant achievements both in the classroom and on the springboard. Who better to tell us a little about Naomi’s diving career at Sayre, than her Diving Coach Jamie Palumbo.

I coached Naomi for her high school diving team and saw the work ethic, leadership and sportsmanship she demonstrated. She was only a freshman when she was first named the Team Captain for Sayre because of her maturity, leadership, and ability to work well with the other divers. Naomi had an impressive high school diving career that included scoring in numerous regional meet finals, placing as high as 5th in the KHSAA State Diving Championships, and made First Team All State all four years at Sayre. Because of her hard work and dedication she put in to achieve those accomplishments, I knew that she was going to continue to succeed in college and beyond. It has been exciting to watch Naomi's development through the years and I know that she will continue to do big things throughout her life!

What brought you and your family to Sayre School?

My family and I came to Sayre because my parents were looking for a school with small class sizes and good student to teacher ratios.

How many years were you at Sayre?

I started at Sayre in fourth grade and went all the way through to my high school graduation, so I was there for nine years.

Where are you attending college? Tell us a little about your college.

I am attending college at Denison University where I am majoring in Health, Exercise, and Sport Science (HESS). This is my spring senior semester. Denison is a small liberal arts college in the middle of a beautiful little Ohio town called Granville. The perks of a small liberal arts school are that your education can be very personalized to exactly what you want it to be. You don’t get lost in the crowd, but rather you feel like you are the whole crowd. Professors really listen to you; they care about your education, but they also care about you as a person and how you are doing mentally. They are all aware of the extra-curricular activities that you are a part of and make sure to stay up to date on your successes. Another great aspect of Denison is that you live on campus all four years, so the community is super close.

Name some of your significant athletic accomplishments while attending Denison.

DIVING

2016-2017: NCAC Conference Championship meet: Conference Championship title with the team, 4th place finish on both 1-meter and 3-meter boards

2017-2018: NCAC Conference Championship meet: 2nd place on 3-meter, 4th place on 1-meter. NCAA Division III Regionals qualifier: 5th place finish on 1-meter and 8th place finish on 3-meter.

2018-2019: NCAC Conference Championship: 2nd place on 1-meter, 3rd place on 3-meter. NCAA Division III Regionals qualifier: 7th place finish on both 1-meter and 3-meter. NCAA Division III Nationals qualifier and Nationals team member. Placed 18th on 3-meter, 20th on 1-meter. Nationals team placed 3rd.

2019-2020: Dive team captain, NCAC Conference Championship Title with the team, Individual NCAC conference champion on 1-meter, 2nd place finish on 3-meter, NCAC Diver of The Year, NCAA Division III Regionals qualifier, NCAA Division III Nationals qualifier and Nationals team member, CSCAA Division III All-American.

As a student athlete, list some of your academic achievements and/or extra-curricular activities at Denison.

Fall of 2018- Spring 2020 Worked in the Athletic Training room as an Assistant Athletic Trainer.

2019-2020 Dean’s List, and a member of the Student Class Gift Committee.

What is your favorite memory of Sayre?

My favorite memory of Sayre was hatching baby chicks in 4th grade.

How did Sayre prepare you for your life today?

Sayre taught me the importance of a community that felt like a family. Along with this, Sayre also taught me the importance of small classes with good student/teacher relationships and the impact that this can make on your education.

If asked, what are the most important things you would tell parents and/or prospective students about Sayre?

Again, I would emphasize the importance of small class sizes and good/close relationships with teachers. The teachers make sure that as students, you understand they want you to really learn and understand the material.

Naomi has future plans to attend Athletic Training School and become an Athletic trainer. We wish her all the best!

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