Tanessa, an Inspiration!

Tanessa Morris, a member of the 2022-2023 UNL Track Team
Tanessa Morris, a member of the 2022-2023 UNL Track Team

by Jerome Okojokwu-Idu, graduate student in Natural Resource Sciences.

Tanessa Morris hails from the tiny hamlet of Patricia, Alberta, Canada. In addition to being home of Dinosaur Park, a UNESCO World Heritage Site, the community of Patricia is known for agriculture and is part of Alberta’s Eastern Irrigation District. Growing up on a cattle ranch in the heart of one of the largest irrigation districts in Alberta has not only made Tanessa into a self-confessed cow whisperer but has also spawned a deep interest in hydrology and the way water works. In addition to working on a master’s degree in Natural Resource Sciences with a specialization in Hydrological Sciences, Tanessa is also an NCAA Division 1 Hammer Thrower competing with the University of Nebraska-Lincoln Huskers. At the Big 10 Conference Championships in Bloomington, Indiana, Tanessa threw a season best of 62.76 metres to become the 2023 Big 10 Conference Champion in Women’s Hammer Throw. This throw stands as the second-best throw in school history, and this is the first UNL Women’s Hammer Throw Championship since joining Big 10 in 2012.

In the beginning …
“I have been involved in sports my entire life. My parents were rodeo athletes, and I naturally was involved in rodeo from an early age - pretty much from the time I was able to sit up in the saddle. In true Canadian fashion, I began playing hockey around the age of 5 but was soon enticed into figure skating by the pretty sparkly dresses. I have often told my dad that I would have kept playing hockey if he had just convinced the other coach to let him glue a few sequins on that hockey uniform. Competitive figure skating became a passion for me and at the age of 16, I moved out of province to train seriously. Unfortunately for my figure skating career, I hit a growth spurt and gravity was no longer my friend when it came to triple jumps. Fortunately, I was able to begin serious training in the throws events and dedicate the time required to develop my throwing technique. When the time for university came, I chose to attend the University of Lethbridge to train with the throws coach there. I transferred to the University of Montana in my third year to have the opportunity to compete in NCAA Division 1 throwing. I completed my two bachelor degrees in Montana and moved on the University of Nebraska-Lincoln to begin work on my master’s degree and also train and compete with a very strong throws program.”

Read more of Tanessa's story and see more pictures of her competing in the hammer throw at:

More details at: https://snr.unl.edu/aboutus/what/newstory.aspx?fid=1055