Lynn English basketball star Diondra Woumn has accepted a scholarship offer from Franklin Pierce University in New Hampshire and will begin her studies in the health sciences there in the 2013-14 academic year.
A 5-feet-9-inch senior captain and two-time Northeastern Conference All-Star for the Lady Bulldogs, Woumn had also considered offers from the University of Bridgeport and the New Jersey Institute of Technology (NJIT) but opted for Franklin Pierce, who competes in the Division 2 Northeast-10 Conference. Franklin Pierce was the 14th President of the United States and is the only President from New Hampshire.
“I truly am blessed to have this opportunity,” said the 18-year-old Woumn, who was joined at the letter-of-intent signing ceremony Friday by her parents, David and Vanessa Woumn, and her grandmother, Lillie Woumn. “It feels great. I worked really hard for this opportunity and I’m thankful to all the people who helped me achieve this honor.”
Woumn thanked the coaches who have guided her basketball career.
“Coach [Fred] Hogan is a great coach – I might not be the easiest person to coach, but he has helped me out a lot,” said Woumn. “I’ve known Coach Hogan since I started playing basketball and he’s been a close family friend and one of my mentors for basketball and he’s always there for me.”
An honor roll student, Woumn also praised the English administration and faculty.
“Choosing to attend Lynn English High School was definitely one of the best decisions I have made,” said Woumn. “Lynn English helped me mature a lot in my years here. I’m thankful to the teachers and administration for everything they have done for me.”
Woumn is looking forward to the coming basketball season where she’ll join Catherine Stinson, Mikayla Everette, and Deidre Newson in leadership roles for the defending NEC champions.
“I’m really excited about the season,” said Woumn. “A state championship is the No. 1 goal.”
Woumn also paid tribute to her parents, David, a Lynn Police officer, and Vanessa, her brothers, Ryan and Darius, and her grandmothers, Antoinette Steed and Lillie Woumn.
“They’re the greatest parents, ever,” said Woumn. “They motivate me a lot and watching my brother, Ryan, when he was younger, I really didn’t understand why they were pushing him a lot, but now I understand why they pushed him to focus on the main goals academically and athletically and I know all my parents’ guidance and hard work paid off. It makes me happy knowing that I made my parents and my grandparents proud. Ryan has been my idol in basketball since I was a little kid. Ryan and Darius have always made me stride toward greatness.”
She also credited her conditioning coach Kenny Green for helping her develop her strength and speed in individual workouts.
Lynn English Principal Thomas Strangie, Athletic Director Gary Molea, and Coach Fred Hogan also attended the letter-signing ceremony.
“Diondra is a great kid and this is a great tribute to her,” said Strangie. “She is a credit to our school. Her family has been fantastic. They have been supportive for her four years at English. I couldn’t be happier for Diondra.”
“We’re really proud of Diondra,” said Hogan. “She has a great family. I’ve watched Diondra grow up from a little kid and this is a great accomplishment for her and the school.”
David Woumn said it was a proud day for the entire family.
“I’m just so very proud of my daughter,” said Woumn. “She’s always wanted to play basketball and to see her dream come true to play basketball in college is unbelievable for us. We’re really looking forward to her continuing her education at Franklin Pierce and I want to thank the school for giving her a scholarship and Mr. [James] Ridley and Mr. [Marvin] Avery and her Mass Thundercats AAU family and Coach Hogan and his staff for the tremendous work they’ve done with Diondra the past four years.”