Amie Thompson - Elite athlete, electrical engineer and a young woman of contrasts.
Amie Thompson is a graceful ‘dancer’ in the pool, spinning and splashing in a beautifully choreographed sequence of elaborate moves. While on land, she’s at home amongst power boards and electrical systems, using physics and maths to work with all kinds of electronic devices, from the smallest pocket devices to large supercomputers.
As a member of Murdoch University’s Elite Athletics program, Amie is balancing her Electrical Power Engineering degree and her Environmental Engineering degree with her career in synchronised swimming. She’s training for the Tokyo Olympics in July, after having competed in the Rio Olympics in 2016.
"I’ve always wanted to break the stereotypes of what a woman should be,” said Amie.
“The attraction to ‘synchro’ is the fact that it’s technical, yet artistic and graceful and I love the contrast it creates with the technical and practical part of my degrees.”
According to Steffi Langer-Kool, coordinator of the Elite Athlete Program, Amie’s success is due to her incredible focus and dedication.
“Amie has a very high GPA (grade point average) and was the recipient of a grant in Semester Two,” said Steffi. She received the funding because of her outstanding academic performance, potentially being qualified for the Olympic Games in Tokyo and her contribution to Murdoch University.
“The money can be applied to travel expenses to compete in national or international competitions, or for equipment costs related to her sport.
“It’s Murdoch’s mission to support these incredible sporting men and women, so they can go on to become ambassadors for the program and attract other future leaders.”
Murdoch’s Elite Athlete Program enables elite athletes (as described under the guiding principles of the Elite Athlete Friendly University program) to balance training, competition and study commitments.
Each athlete is designated a liaison officer who assists with supporting the student to meet their individual goals by allocating class preferences, applying for extensions if needed and generally acting as a conduit between academic staff and the student.
“Being away a lot is the biggest challenge I face when combining my studies and sport. When I am at the Australian Institute of Sport for two weeks I have hardly any time for university, but my teachers and Murdoch staff are very understanding when I am away,” said Amie.
Amie’s gruelling training schedule dictates that she spends around four hours per day in the pool, five days per week. If selected for the Olympic Games in Tokyo, she will train eight hours a day, with two days off. While also getting herself ready for the trials, she enjoys coaching 10-12 year old girls.
“I am extremely lucky to have the assistance that Murdoch provides. I look forward to some great competition and returning triumphantly with some stories to tell,” she said.