DURHAM, N.C. – GoDuke.com recently sat down with Amanda Patterson for her senior profile. Patterson is a member of the women’s cross country and track and field teams, and competes primarily in the 3K, 5K, 6K, and 1,600 meters. She owns personal bests of 4:54.88 in the indoor 1,600 and 10:29.74 in the 3,200 meters outdoors. She was Duke’s seventh finisher at the ACC Championships, taking 46th overall, and also placed second for Duke and fifth overall at the Murray Keating Invitational – which the Blue Devils won on Oct. 4. Patterson discusses her coaching aspirations, her favorite spot to study, her love of The Office, plus much more.
GoDuke.com: What is your nickname?
Amanda Patterson: Fairy, A.L.P or some people just call me by my last name.
GD: Who is your favorite professional athlete?
AP: Lance Armstrong. I read all of his books in high school, and he actually became my motivation to get better in my own sport. In my races, I’d always tell myself that if Lance could deal with cancer and proceed to do the insanely hard workouts I’d read about, then I could run a decent 5K.
GD: What’s your favorite TV show?
AP: The Office.
GD: Who’s your favorite fictional character (from a TV show, growing up, etc.)?
AP: Quentin Cassidy from the book Once a Runner.
GD: Do you have any pre-race rituals?
AP: I have a ton of superstitions before races, such as wearing certain socks or having to have my nails painted. They aren’t always relevant to the situation at hand, but if they help me then there’s no reason to stop believing in them. I was definitely worse about it in high school, though.
GD: What would your dream job be?
AP: Becoming a sports psychologist and coaching a high school track team.
GD: What’s your favorite memory to date of your college career?
AP: Probably the ACC meet this season. I have been hurt for a few years, so it has been great to be able to bounce back and contribute to our team’s success. I’m hoping my next great memories will be [NCAA Southeast] regionals and [NCAA] nationals within the next few weeks.
GD: What’s the thing you most admire about your coach and why?
AP: Kevin [Jermyn] is great about individualizing every girl’s program. Every one of us has different needs regarding our training, and he is somehow able to keep up with all of us. Kevin has done a great job working with me and figuring out a training plan that keeps me healthy while also leading me to success when it comes time to race.
GD: Where is your secret spot to study?
AP: McClendon Tower, first floor. There’s a printer that almost always works (which is a rarity), three computers, and there are hardly ever any people down there. It’s like having my own personal library – though now I guess the secret is out. Plus there is coffee three floors up at the Bella Union, and I love going there for breaks.
GD: What’s your favorite sport, other than your own, to watch on TV?
AP: Basketball, for sure. I used to play for hours every day and wanted to play in college, but I ended up being a little too short for that.
GD: What is your advice to this year’s freshmen on your team?
AP: Enjoy your time at Duke and the friendships you make, because it all goes very quickly!