MICHELLE KWAN Biography - Famous Sports men and women


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Name: Michelle Kwan                                                                     
Born: 7 July 1980                                                                       
Michelle Kwan (born July 7, 1980) is an American figure skater. She has won nine U.S.   
championships, five World Championships, and two Olympic medals. She has               
remained competitive for over a decade and is the most decorated figure skater         
in U.S. history. Known for her consistency and expressive artistry on ice,             
she is widely considered to be one of the greatest figure skaters of all time.         
Born in Torrance, California, Kwan is the third child of Danny and Estella Kwan,       
Chinese immigrants from Hong Kong. As a child, Kwan grew up speaking a mixture         
of Cantonese and English at home. In addition, she also speaks some                     
conversational Mandarin. Kwan's interest in figure skating began at the age of         
five when she followed her two older siblings (ice hockey player Ron and figure         
skater Karen) onto the ice. Karen and Michelle began serious training when she         
was about 8 years old. They practiced three to four hours a day, waking up at 3am       
to skate before school and going back to the rink right after school to skate           
again. Paying for their increased skating-rink time led to financial hardship           
for Kwan's working class family. Her mother took on a second job and her father         
started working extra hours to finance the rink time and coaching fees.                 
Eventually the family decided to sell their house, but that still wasn't enough         
to finance the skating. When Kwan was ten years old, her family could no longer         
afford a coach, but they were offered financial assistance by another member of         
the Los Angeles Figure Skating Club that allowed them to train at the Ice               
Castle International Training Center in Lake Arrowhead, California.                     
Kwan was homeschooled starting at the age of 13. Prior to that, she attended           
Soleado Elementary School in Palos Verdes, California. After graduating from Rim       
of the World High School in 1999, she attended UCLA for one year. In the fall of       
2006 she transferred to the University of Denver with the intent to major in           
political science with a minor in international studies.