Sinclair Community College student Katelyn Raney used to be a dancer. She took ballet, tap and jazz dance, but time constraints became a problem.
“It came to a point that I couldn’t do all three, so I decided not to dance anymore,” Raney said.
Raney began taking karate classes shortly after the move away from dance in December of 1997. She recently brought home two silver medals in the Arnold Sports Festival in Columbus on March 8. Raney’s accomplishment is all the more impressive since she has not participated in a karate tournament in nearly five years.
“School stopped me for a point,” Raney said.
Raney has earned her first-degree black belt – an accomplishment she marks up to sheer will and determination.
“You have to have that feeling like you want it more than anything,” Raney said. “You never give up on it.”
Raney does not plan on stopping with just a first-degree black belt and says that she plans to pursue a second-degree black belt in August of this year.
“She embraces challenges and does everything she can to do the best she can,” said Raney’s karate instructor Glenda Olin.
Olin has been Raney’s instructor for the past ten years.
“I have kind of watched her grow up through karate,” Olin said.
Olin has studied karate for 36 years and volunteers her time as a karate instructor. She also set up a scholarship, which is funded through individual contributions and fundraisers.
“All of the money that comes in is used back for the kids in the program,” Olin said.
One stipulation of the scholarship award is involvement in volunteer activity.
“Our sensei does so much for us, that we have to give back to our community as well,” Raney said. “That’s one of the duties as a black belt – to help my sensei as much as I can.”