DURHAM, N.C. – Head coach Megan Cooke Carcagno and the Duke rowing program are excited to announce the signing of Megan Lee to a National Letter of Intent (NLI) to compete for the Blue Devils in the 2019-20 campaign.
Lee comes to Durham from Natick, Mass., and currently attends Newton Country Day School of the Sacred Heart. She is a member of the Newton Country Day School Crew rowing club under the direction of head coach Kate Spelman.
Lee serves as the co-captain of her club team, being elected by her teammates. She was invited to both the 2018 US Rowing High Performance Team and the 2018 Youth Regional Challenge, which is held in Sarasota, Fla. Lee was selected to compete for the CamAmMex Team, representing the United States in Mexico City. Lee helped lead the U.S. boat to a gold medal finish winning the race by nine seconds ahead of Canada.
In 2017, Lee helped guide her youth 4+ crew to an eighth-place finish at the 2017 Head of the Charles Regatta, while her crew was recognized as the fastest high school crew and won the Massachusetts Metropolitan Commission trophy for being the most competitive Massachusetts High School boat in the race. She was awarded the Most Improve Rower in the 2017 spring season, and the Most Valuable Rower in the 2017 fall season.
A two-sport athlete who also competed in swimming, Lee was a competitive swimmer from the ages of 6 to 16 as a member of the Gator Swim Club. She is a member of the National Honor Society, and serves as both the co-head of the Campus Ministry Committee and Freshman Mentor. She received the University of Pennsylvania Book Award in 2018, the Religion Award in 2017, and the Biology Award 2016.
Lee was born in Boston, Mass., and is the daughter of Chris and Cheryl Lee. She has two brothers, Christopher and Ryan.
What has been your favorite rowing memory?
ML: “Head of the Charles 2017 has been my favorite rowing memory so far. Through training for HOCR which is on our home course, my boat had become very close and we were all extremely motivated to perform at our absolute best. The day of the race we were bow 27 and right out of the start line we began passing boats. We knew during the race that we were doing well but we never would have expected 8th place. We found out later that we were the fastest high school team and won the Massachusetts District Commission Trophy. It was so amazing to come from a small high school team and be able to be competitive with much larger teams. Head of the Charles 2017 proved that when our boat worked together and was willing to put in the extra work, we could accomplish something great and have fun while doing it.”
How did you get started in rowing?
ML: “I was a competitive swimmer for 10 years, beginning at the age of six. In the spring of my sophomore year, I became dissatisfied with swimming and was looking for more of a team sport. My school had a crew team and my friends on the team convinced me to try it. They taught me how to erg before the season started and I embraced the workouts immediately. I knew after the first day of practice on the water (even though it was 39 degrees and raining) that I loved rowing.”
Why did you choose Duke?
ML: “Before I visited Duke I had been told by different people that it was an amazing school. It was not until my visit that I realized how special Duke is. With the combination of excellent academics, school pride, and friendly students, I knew this was the school I wanted to attend. By taking the team bus to practice, I noticed how much everyone on the team looks out for one another and while watching practice I was inspired by the amount of drive and passion that was evident on the water. The coaching staff was also another major driver for me, they are so supportive and motivating and I can’t wait to be coached by them. I could not be more excited to spend the next 4 years being a Blue Devil!”
Hobbies: “Hiking, waterskiing, hanging out with my family and friends, swimming, and running
Favorite athlete: “Katie Ledecky”
Best advice you’ve ever received: “Nothing good ever comes from staying in your comfort zone”