Title IX 40 for 40: Katie Meili
Katie Meili enters her senior season not only
as one of Columbia’s best swimmers, but also as one of the
top swimmers in the Ivy League. After earning second-team All-Ivy
in the 100 breaststroke as a freshman and first-team All-Ivy in
the 200 IM as a sophomore, Meili had a breakout junior year. She
earned Swimmer of the Meet at the 2012 Ivy League Women’s
Swimming and Diving Championships after taking home five titles at
the event, including three individual titles. Her 200 IM time of
1:57.38 marked a school, pool and League record, as was her time in
the 100 breaststroke (59.64). She went on to capture All-America
honors in the 200 IM and the 100-breast at the NCAA
What impact has Title IX had on you/college athletics?
Meili: Without Title IX, I probably would not be participating in college athletics. Swimming in college has been such a huge part of my life and has made me the person I am today, so I'm extremely grateful that I have had the opportunity to do it.
How did Title IX help to change the perception of women in athletics?
Meili: I think that others respect women in athletics more because of Title IX. People now see that we are not only able to compete at the collegiate level, but are extremely successful.
What has Title IX done for women outside of the sports realm?
Meili: Outside of the spots realm, I believe that Title IX has shown women that following dreams is encouraged and supported.
What effects will Title IX have for the younger generation?
Meili: I think that Title IX will continue to impact future generations in a positive way. As time goes on, equality among women and men in sports will grow.
What opportunities for women did Title IX help create?
Meili: Title IX has given women many countless opportunities. Participating in college athletics opens doors and allows you to make connections and bonds that cannot be made elsewhere. There is no telling how many women are as successful as they are today because of Title IX.
What is the biggest challenge to women in sports?
Meili: I don't think there is a huge challenge for women in sports. I feel I am treated equally and with as much respect as men are. Title IX has obviously had a huge part in making this equality a reality.
Who is someone you view as a pioneer in women's athletics and why?
Meili: I view our Athletic Director, Dr. M. Dianne Murphy, a pioneer in women's athletics. She is not only a pioneer in that she is 1 of only a handful female ADs in Division I athletics, but she constantly pushes for success from all athletic teams and she always supports women's teams. Columbia athletics is very lucky to have such a powerful and successful leader!