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Eric Shanteau

Inspirational Gold Medal Olympian and Cancer Survivor

Eric Shanteau broke onto the national scene at the age of 16 when he swam at the 2000 Olympic Trials. Competing in the 200 and 400 IM against many of his heroes in swimming, Eric finished 10th and 11th respectively. Upon graduating high school two years later Eric became the first male in the history…

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Eric Shanteau broke onto the national scene at the age of 16 when he swam at the 2000 Olympic Trials. Competing in the 200 and 400 IM against many of his heroes in swimming, Eric finished 10th and 11th respectively. Upon graduating high school two years later Eric became the first male in the history of the USA Swimming Scholastic All-American Program to graduate with a 4.0 GPA and win a national title.

Eric went on to attend Auburn University where he completed his four years of eligibility undefeated in team competitions. During that time his time compiled 32 dual meet victories, 4 SEC titles, and 4 NCAA titles. Eric was a co captain his senior year as he finished out his flawless career at Auburn. Eric graduated in 2006 with a degree in Entrepreneurship and Family Business and was named to the SEC Academic Honor Roll and a CSCAA Academic All American. After graduating, Eric moved to Austin, TX to train with coach Eddie Reese in preparation for the 2008 Olympic Trials.

On June 19, 2008, just one week before he was to compete for a spot on the Olympic Team, Eric was diagnosed with testicular cancer. Eric was cleared to compete and went on to make the Olympic Team in the 200 breaststroke. After careful consideration Eric decided to delay treatment and stay on the team in order to fulfill his lifelong dream of competing in the Olympics. Despite battling cancer, Eric swam a personal best time at the Beijing Olympics. Upon returning home Eric underwent treatment and was officially declared cancer free on September 15, 2008. Since that time he has become a voice for young adult cancer awareness.

Less than a year after going through cancer, Eric would return to the pool and establish himself among the worlds elite. At the world championships in 2009 Eric broke the American Records in both the 100 and 200 meter breaststroke. He also broke the World Record and became a World Champion as part of the 4 x 100 Medley Relay. Eric currently trains under coach Dave Salo at the University of Southern California where he is looking toward the 2012 London Olympic Games.

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  • Bring your Goals to Life: Achieving the Top 1%
    Eric Shanteau set a goal of becoming an Olympic swimmer at the age of 10. After narrowly missing the 2004 games, he qualified in 2008, only to discover he had cancer, and delayed his treatment in order to compete. He achieved his dream by winning a gold medal at the 2012 games as part of the medley relay team. Ranked in the top 1% of swimmers in the world from 2008 to 2012, Shanteau explains how to deal with change, what do when things are out of your control and how to persevere no matter what the odds. Shanteau challenges audiences to reach for their dreams not just by setting goals, but by making a plan to achieve those goals. He explains how learning to fail helps to achieve ultimate success and that visualization is an important process along the road to achieving the future you want.
  • Keeping My Head Above Water: Resilience in the Face of Adversity
    Eric Shanteau’s cancer diagnosis was one of the biggest stories of the 2008 Beijing Olympics. Shanteau takes his audience on a journey from the harsh reality of a cancer diagnosis to winning an Olympic gold medal. The ability to persevere under any circumstance is a quality Shanteau has had the opportunity to test time and again.  In this presentation he demonstrates the power of a positive mindset and the importance of a never-quit attitude as key factors in his ability to always find the silver lining.

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Eric Shanteau - Cancer survivor, Olympic swimmer, and Motivational Speaker

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