Student Profile - Danielle Montalbano
Since the age of four, first-year student Danielle Montalbano has loved the sound the edges of her skates make on the ice. The love of that sound, along with a lot of natural talent and hard work, helped bring Montalbano closer to her dream of making the U.S. Olympic figure skating team.
At the age of eight, Montalbano started working with two coaches who had trained Olympic medal winners. By the third grade, she was skating all day and being homeschooled.
Montalbano, who credits her family’s support for her success, started skating in competitions when she was seven. At the age of 12, she represented the United States, placing eighth, in an international championship in Belgium. She competed in the national U.S. Figure Skating Championship at the age of 17, where the results of her performance allowed her to travel with the U.S. figure skating team to various competitions around the world.
One of the reasons Montalbano chose to attend Hillyer College is its proximity to the International Skating Center of Connecticut, in Simsbury, Conn., where she continues her training. “Hillyer has been flexible and supportive about my skating,” she says. “That makes it easier for me to arrange my schedule to keep up with both skating and studying.”
Montalbano is currently focusing on her studies, but is preparing to represent the University of Hartford at the national U.S. Collegiate Figure Skating Championships next summer. “No matter what, skating will always be part of my life. I still love the sound the edges of my skates make on the ice. It clears my head.”