Senior commits to Notre Dame


Senior Parker Macy has wrapped up his childhood dream of swimming into college with a verbal commitment to the University of Notre Dame this past August. In the process, he landed record after record, set personal bests, placed as finalist in California Interscholastic Federation Division I, and qualified at the Olympic Trials in his junior year. 

“For Parker, it’s never been about [the Olympics], it’s always been about college, and getting into a school he may not normally get into,” Macy’s father, Ryan Macy said. “He’s been working at this since he was five. At a young age, he set those goals for himself and reached them, and we never had to push him.”

Macy began connecting with coaches and recruiters during his sophomore year, and the scouting process officially started June 15 after his sophomore year, as he and his family received calls and emails from universities including the University of Southern California, Harvard University, the University of Pennsylvania – and the list goes on. Macy’s firm decision is rooted in the university’s prestigious reputation in sports and scholarship, a perfect environment for his academic and athletic needs.

“Right now I’m thinking about either going into business, since they have a really great business school, or possibly pre-med because I’m looking into oral surgery or becoming an orthodontist,” Macy said. “But obviously things change as you go through college so I never know where I might end up.” 

Macy’s ability to balance academics and swim is just one of the skills that he developed on his journey and will benefit him in university and beyond. Support from his family, coaches, friends, and his persistence have brought him to his goal, and his Olympic Trial time and records held in Southern California, both in breast stroke, demonstrates his determination to conquer challenges – as no one would have imagined, years ago when Macy just began swimming, that breaststroke would become his specialty when he nearly quit swim because of it. All the sacrifices put in throughout elementary, middle and high school have ultimately paid off with lasting relationships and strong work ethic. 

“We used to drive one and a half hours, once or even twice a day, in order to get to Irvine and swim. One of our hardest decisions was when we decided to make the move to Irvine,” Macy said. “The amount of support my parents have given me, and the amount of time spent – it’s been unreal. I literally could have never done any of this without them.” 

A typical weekday for Macy consisted of two hours of practice before school, a school day with AP classes, after school practice and swim meets over the weekends. Above all this, Macy keeps a humble and positive attitude.

“He comes into a 4:45 morning practice and he can bring a smile to the whole team; his energy and bravado is so infectious, and he was like that when he was younger,” former coach Joey Gracia said. “I have no doubt that he’s going to be amazing at whatever he puts his mind to, and if anyone who never met him and saw his smile, they know they’d be in good hands.

And improvement doesn’t wait for a pandemic to end – now, despite COVID-19, the swimmer’s discipline hasn’t faltered. Waking up before the sun rises, Macy continues to practice nearly two hours every morning, in addition to conditioning. 

“It was a long road to get here,” Macy’s mother, Joanna Macy said. “And we’re so proud and happy to see him achieve what he wanted because he’s worked so hard.”