Melanie Margalis Fink is set to become the newest assistant coach of the Southern Methodist University (SMU) women’s swim team.
Margalis Fink, who was announced as SMU’s new assistant on Monday, will join the newly-hired Ozzie Quevedo on the Mustang staff, as Quevedo was named the program’s head coach this past April. Quevedo and Margalis Fink will replace the former head and associate head coaches at SMU, Steve Collins and Naya Higashijima, respectively.
Collins announced his retirement earlier this year, having served as the head coach at SMU for 37 years. Shortly after Collins’ announcement, the University of New Mexico named Higashijima the head coach of their swimming & diving program.
Margalis Fink began coaching in 2022 as an assistant coach at Georgia Tech shortly after ending her career as an elite competitive swimmer.
She represented the U.S. internationally several times (as Melanie Margalis), highlighted by her appearance at the 2016 Olympic Games, where she won a gold medal in the women’s 4×200 freestyle relay.
Margalis Fink also won relay medals at the 2017 and 2019 World Championships, along with individual medals at the 2014, 2018, and 2021 World Short Course Championships. Margalis Fink is also an experienced and successful swimmer within the NCAA and contributed to Georgia’s team victory at the 2013 and 2014 NCAA Championships. In 2014 she won silver in the 200 IM and bronze in the 400 IM at NCAA’s.
When Margalis Fink announced that she would be joining the GT coaching staff, she didn’t explicitly retire from the sport, but that she has no current plans to race.
During Magalis Fink’s year at GT, the Yellow Jackets placed ninth at the Women’s ACC Swimming & Diving Championships and 40th at the NCAA Championships. In 2023, SMU placed third at the Women’s American Athletic Conference Championships, and qualified two athletes, swimmer Luana Alonso and diver Nicole Stambo, to NCAAs.
In 2022, Margalis Fink married fellow Olympian and former teammate at the University of Georgia, Nic Fink. The two live together in Georgia and Fink finished his Master’s degree in electrical engineering at Georgia Tech in 2022 (shortly before winning 100 breast gold at the 2022 World Short Course Championships). It is yet unclear whether Fink will also be relocating to Texas when Margalis Fink joins the SMU staff. Fink is currently working as an engineer and training and will be vying for a spot on the 2023 World Championships team later this year.