Johnston resident skates his way to URI graduation

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as top electrical engineering student

KINGSTON, R.I. – May 8, 2007 – University of Rhode Island electrical engineering major and figure skater Alex Boeglin has found success in his college career riding on balance and dedication.

He balances his heavy engineering course load with long hours training on the ice. He started skating when he was 7 and started competing at the age of 12. His current skating coach is Olympic bronze-medalist Elena Grushina, and he is also a skating coach himself, working with students across Rhode Island and southeastern Massachusetts.

Boeglin is a two-time New England regional silver medalist in ice dancing and has competed at the Junior National Figure Skating Championships, the Junior Olympic Figure Skating Championships and the 2006 Figure Skating Eastern Sectional Championships.

The 21-year-old lives in Johnston with his family, where he has found a middle ground between the university and his skating responsibilities. “Being home allows for less distractions and helps me focus on my studies,” he said.

Boeglin chose URI after graduating a year early from the Wheeler School in Providence. He said he knew automatically that URI was the right school for him because he feels it has one of the best engineering programs in the state. His father earned undergraduate and graduate degrees in mechanical engineering from URI, and his sister graduated from the same program.

“I also wanted to stay in the area so that I could skate,” explained Boeglin. “That was very important to me.”

While coaching and skating, Boeglin has managed a 3.98 grade point average. He is a member of numerous honors societies and has received four scholarships based on his academic merit. In 2006, he was named the outstanding junior by the URI Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering. He was also elected as vice president of URI’s chapter of the Eta Kappa Nu Honor Society in 2006. At graduation ceremonies on May 20, he will receive the President’s Award for Student Excellence as the top student in the electrical engineering program.

“I’ve always kind of been a perfectionist with school and work,” Boeglin said. “I think that work ethic also carried over onto the ice.”

Although he still skates for enjoyment, Boeglin has currently put professional skating on hold to focus on applying to graduate school and summer internships. After graduation he begins an internship with Raytheon, and he will begin graduate school at Brown University in the fall.