Alumni Spotlight

Jack Nicklaus, Class of 1957, retired professional golfer who won 18 career major championships

The Upper Arlington High School boys golf team with honoree Jack Nicklaus

Jack Nicklaus became the first inductee into the newly created Upper Arlington High School Athletic Hall of Fame. He shared these memories at the ceremony on April 19 at the Ohio State Golf Club.

Notable achievements at UAHS

Nicklaus had twice earned individual medalist honors at the state golf championships in 1956 and 1957 and led his team to win the state championship in 1956 and place third in 1957. He also won the Tri-State State High School Championship in 1957 and was the individual medalist with a score of 67.

As a sophomore, junior and senior, Nicklaus was selected as all-league in basketball, and he received honorable mention all-Ohio as a shooting guard his senior year.

“As I grew up in Arlington, something that was really special to me was that I got to play all sports,” Nicklaus recalled. “The school was big enough to compete but small enough that you got to be able to play everything or anything you wanted to play.”

The origin of the Golden Bear nickname

He recalled that in 1961, as he turned pro, he was looking for an emblem for his first contract with a sportswear company when an Australian reporter wrote an article referring to him as “a cuddly golden bear.”

“At that time I was a little taller and a little bigger, and so I came back and we went through all the different things that we might have for an emblem.  And finally I said, ‘Guys, come on. I’ve been a Golden Bear all my life. Why don’t I stay a Golden Bear?’

“I’ll always be a Golden Bear, and I’ll always be proud to be a Golden Bear — not only through my company but also through the schools.”

How did UA prepare him for success?

“Arlington was very special,” Nicklaus recalled. “We got a good education at Arlington. I know you still get a good education at Arlington.

“Arlington prepared us very well for college, prepared us for the what-ifs, and I enjoyed it.”

To view a video of the induction ceremony, please visit https://youtu.be/NB8osfNaXY4. The Upper Arlington High School Athletic Department will share nomination guidelines later this year for the class of 2018 inductees.

Posted by Colleen Wright in alumni on Tuesday May 16
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Abby Johnston, Class of 2007, 2012 Olympic Silver Medalist in Diving and 2016 Olympic Team USA Diver

Notable achievements at UAHSThe diver in front of the American Flag wearing an Olympic medal

I was a member of the varsity swim and dive team for 3 years (2004-2007), and, as a team, we won the state championships all 3 years.

College experience

I am starting my third year of medical school at Duke University and plan to go into emergency medicine.

How did UA prepare her for success?

Growing up in Upper Arlington was very formative for my academic and athletic success. UA has a tradition of excellence both in and out of the classroom. The community helped foster my work ethic, which ultimately allowed me to pursue my dreams of going to the Olympics and becoming a doctor. I wouldn't be the person I am today without the support and encouragement of the Upper Arlington community.

PHOTO COURTESY OF NBC OLYMPICS

Posted by Colleen Wright in alumni on Monday August 8, 2016
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Carri Twigg, UAHS Class of 2004

Carri TwiggNotable achievements at UAHS

For her senior thesis, Carri re-created the eighth-grade Washington, D.C., trip for 10 foster children from Columbus Public Schools. Her senior year work/study program involved teaching adult literacy at the Columbus Literacy Council. Both of these experiences serving people who didn’t have the same advantages of her in UA deeply affected Carri.

Career and goals

Carri is a special assistant to President Barack Obama and the director of public engagement for Vice President Joe Biden. She engineers the external affairs and community relations for Biden, working daily with him to determine where he will go to interact with Americans on policy issues. Her long-term goals involve continuing to work in the areas of social justice and economic opportunity.

How did UA Schools prepare her for success?

“Over the years, I had a handful of educators who truly invested in me and made me feel special. From Wickliffe Elementary to Hastings Middle School and UAHS, there were some real standout adults who encouraged me and pushed me, even though I always had a rambunctious streak. I’ll share one of my mom’s favorite stories from my childhood: One day, early in elementary school, my mom found me in my room with a stack of library books. I told her I went to get a library card and checked them out. When she brought me back to the library to return the books, I greeted one particular librarian. The librarian told her that I came in, asked for some books but didn’t have a card. The librarian said that, without a picture ID or a parent, I couldn’t have a card. I walked back home, got my Wickliffe yearbook, walked back and showed it to her. The librarian was so impressed by my determination, she gave me the card and helped me pick out some books. Community members who work with kids and believe in them and show trust in them make for a great community.”

Posted by Colleen Wright in alumni on Tuesday December 22, 2015
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Upper Arlington Schools

1950 North Mallway Drive
Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221
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UPPER ARLINGTON SCHOOLS
1950 North Mallway Drive
Upper Arlington, Ohio 43221
(614) 487-5000

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