Kiki Zamost: making waves from coast to coast

Senior Kiki Zamost maneuvers her boat through the water.

Supplied by Kiki Zamost '20

Senior Kiki Zamost maneuvers her boat through the water.

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   In August 2020, Kiki Zamost will be packing up her life in New Jersey and moving across the country— because she just committed to Loyola Marymount University in Los Angeles, California.

   Zamost has been rowing since sixth grade and started competing with South Jersey Rowing Club in eighth grade. Her journey to find her athletic niche was not a simple one; she tried fencing, parkour, swimming, kickboxing, and tennis.

   “With rowing, I never expected myself to really stay with it, but there’s something very special about rowing on the water, whether you’re rowing at 5 in the morning and watching the sunrise, or you’re at a 7 PM practice and the sun’s setting on you. You’re just on the serene water surrounded by trees, and it’s such a special experience for each person, and it just separates rowing from every other sport I’ve ever done,” says Zamost. 

   She knows not everyone understands the emotional and physical aspects of crew. “Some people think that it’s not held as highly as other sports. Some people think rowing is really easy and insignificant because they don’t know anything about it,” she explains. This criticism of her sport has never discouraged her, though, and she has continued to work tirelessly, attending crew practices six times a week for much of the school year. 

   Zamost has also participated in programs at the University of Pennsylvania to improve her skills. She spent a month at the college this past summer in a program called Penn AC Gold, where she rowed with other crew members from all over America. 

   Though she was hesitant to row in college due to its extremely competitive nature, Zamost decided at the beginning of junior year to go all-in with the sport and strived to obtain a spot on a crew team post-graduation. 

   After visiting lots of schools and having many discussions with her parents, teammates, and friends, she verbally committed to LMU on October 7, 2019. “It was so exciting to finally commit. It felt like all my hard work had paid off and a lot of the stress of college applications was lifted off my shoulders,” says Zamost.

   Loyola Marymount is the best fit for her in more ways than one. Besides connecting well with the coaches and her future teammates, Zamost is looking forward to studying film in the hub that is Los Angeles, at the eighth best film school in the country. 

   Something else she is excited about is the beach. With Venice Beach being only ten minutes from campus, she can’t wait to spend her days off relaxing by the water.

   Until August comes, though, Zamost will be focusing on graduating from Eastern and continuing to work hard at her sport. 

   “I guess it can feel like my life is kind of consumed by crew sometimes, and there are a lot of people that don’t really get that. But clearly my dedication has been worth it, and I don’t regret any of my hard work.”