Resident on national crew gives advice to local team
Coco Schoeller, a women’s U.S. Rowing team member from Palm Beach, found the key to her athletic career in learning to believe in herself and never quitting.
That’s what the 24-year-old told a group of high school and middle school athletes on the Palm Beach Crew team Wednesday evening at their North Palm Beach facility.
“You need to learn to persevere,” she told the group of about 25 students.
Schoeller grew up in Palm Beach and attended Palm Beach Day Academy until her sophomore year of high school, when she went to a boarding school in Connecticut.
She took up rowing and by junior year, she was invited to her first national team development camp. From there, she was recruited by Brown University and eventually became the team’s captain when the Bears were ranked the number one Division I women’s rowing program.
After graduating from Brown in 2015, Schoeller was invited to join the senior national team and move to Princeton, N.J.
These days she’s either training or coaching, but last week she visited home for a few days.
When she’s back on the island, she likes to wander Worth Avenue and eat at her favorite restaurants, such as the SurfSide Diner and Taboo, but mostly she likes to hang out with her mom, Brewer Schoeller, at their Peruvian Avenue home.
As for the young crew team members, they got a chance to ask questions of someone who has made it to the level they aspire to reach.
One athlete asked: “Do you ever want to stop during a race?”
“You have to kill (stopping) as an option,” Schoeller said.
She also emphasized the importance of having fun with the sport, staying positive and believing in one’s abilities.
“It was super cool hearing from someone ... on the national team,” said team captain Leonie Meyaart, 17. Meyaart, who hopes to row in college, said Schoeller’s point about believing that you can meet your goals stood out to her.
“There’s a lot of pride there, a hometown rower on the national team,” Meyaart said.
Coco Schoeller, a Palm Beacher and a member of the U.S. national crew team who has competed in the Olympic trials, talks Wednesday with members of the Palm Beach Crew team.