Not Just A Jock

Ethan Doll’s Academic Life Outside of Swim & Dive


There are hundreds of athletes here at Hickman and, at face value, it’s easy to see them as just an athlete, or only associate them with their sport. However, beneath the helmet, swim cap, or jersey, there’s more to their story. One of these athletes is Hickman senior and swimmer Ethan Doll. A quiet but friendly student, Doll carries himself with self assurance and a fresh air of humbleness. You might see Doll in the halls or in the media center sporting a “Hickman Swim and Dive” jacket and sleek looking glasses. Or you might see him leaving the pool in the morning, coming off of a hard swim session. 

However, while Doll may be known as a swimmer by some, he also has a unique hidden talent in computer science. 

This year, Doll is one of three Hickman students selected for an internship at Columbia College with  computer science professor Dr. Lao. Doll is doing the internship not for a class or credit, but to simply further his knowledge in the field. During his internship, Doll will be working on computer programming projects at the college level. 

“I’m doing the internship because I want to double major in computer science and mathematics,” explained Doll. “I’ve always been interested in pursuing a programming career for computer science so when the opportunity came up to have an internship with Lao it seemed right to take it.” 

Doll also talked about wanting to expand his knowledge base in mathematics through the internship. He explained how important it is to not just major in computer science itself, but mathematics, too. “When an employer in computer science is choosing between someone who has a mathematics degree and someone without,  jobs will most likely go for you,” said Doll. 

While it is evident that Doll is already thinking about finding a long term job, he is also deep into his college search. “I’ve been looking at multiple colleges on the North West Coast,” said Doll. “I’m looking to be close to my family who will be living there and because it is a big area for computer science related fields, especially in areas such as Silicon Valley.”

Silicon Valley is an area in northern California that is known as a “global center” for innovation and high technology. Doll will be applying to Oregon State, the University of Washington Seattle, and Washington State. 

Though Doll has been invested in computer science since before high school, he has also taken multiple tech courses through the Columbia Area Career Center, including three years of computer science and is currently taking AP computer science. 

Besides being a secret computer mogul, though, Doll is also in fact quite impressive in the pool. Doll has swam all four years of high school and has done eight years of club swimming on Columbia Swim Club. Doll quit club swim this year to focus on school. 

“Swimming has always been a big part of my life and who I am,”  said Doll. “I did summer swim team as a kid, but my older sister and I wanted to do more after the season ended so we started doing CSC.”

Doll explained how this decision eight year ago quickly changed his life. “ When I first started club practice it was only three to four days a week,” explained Doll.” but as I got older it became everyday. During the high school season it was twice a day, with school swim in morning and club at night.”

While this commitment led him to swimming on varsity all four years, Doll explained how this routine affected his sleep, something inherently important for athletes. “Club practice would end around eight oclock at night and then I would have homework afterwards, and then I would get up around five in the