Amr Metwaly finds opportunities, new sport in U.S.


Hannah Roberts

The women's varisty rowing team practices on the Little Arkansas River on Wednesday morning. Coach Calvin Cupp motivated his team saying, "Remind yourself everyday that what you do matters."

You name it, Amr Metwaly has tried it: judo, water polo, boxing. In his hometown of Cairo, Egypt, Metwaly was set on bettering himself and finding his true passion.

When he came to Wichita in July of 2015 his mindset never changed.

Metwaly wasn’t a stranger to Wichita when he decided to attend school at Wichita State two years ago. With his uncle and other family around the area, he had came to visit, at one point he even attended a summer program where a professor gave him the idea of considering Wichita State.

“I liked the idea of studying abroad,” Metwaly said. “I was initially planning on going to Germany and continuing my studies there, but I thought why not go to Wichita State and be around my uncle and my family.”

Adapting to America and his new home was worth it for Metwaly because he saw himself gaining things he hadn’t had the chance to at home.

“Opportunities is the best thing about the US. When you work hard at stuff you get rewarded here,” Metwaly said. “In Egypt,you put a ton of work to get what you deserve, to get the minimal”

Metwaly isn’t wasting any opportunities. When he saw a chance to learn a new sport, he didn’t hesitate.

At the end of his first semester at WSU, Metwaly discovered that there was a rowing team on campus. Naturally, he was drawn to the opportunity of taking on another sport.

“I had always seen rowing on the tv but I didn’t know about it as a sport and how people did it” Metwaly said. “I was excited for the idea [of trying the sport].”

Metwaly started in the spring and was thrown into the novice team where most of the guys had started in the fall.

Although this left him playing catch-up at first, it also gave Metwaly a unique opportunity in the fall when the new class of rowers came in.

“The nice thing is he got to step into more of a leadership role which I think helped him gain some confidence,” head coach Calvin Cupp said. “Because he went from being the least experienced guy in his group to being the most experienced guy in his group”

Even after just one year of rowing, Metwaly finds himself with big aspirations for his future of rowing. With himself being one of the top rowers in terms of metrics, he’s hoping to further his success.

“When i started rowing i didn’t have a clear vision of where i should be at,” Metwaly said. “Right now I am standing among the top three, top four players since the beginning of the season and now I am hoping next season to be number one.”

His passion to get better is no surprise, since the beginning he has been focused on improving.

“I definitely remember whenever he was in my boat he would always ask ‘what can i do better?’” teammate Olivia Black said. “He would always ask that almost every single practice”

As Metwaly continues his rowing and his engineering degree, he doesn’t take anything for granted.

As he remembers the frustrations and obstacles at home, he knows now that he has the opportunity to work hard and be rewarded.

He knows, however, that other people who haven’t got to their place of opportunity yet.

“I would like to tell people who are struggling with their lives that no matter how hard it is or how difficult your path is there is always going to be an out, there is always going to be an exit,” Metwaly said. “You just have to believe and just keep going.”