While her coaches are highly supportive, Hawes’ family also serves as a backbone to her success.
“Morgan is very driven and mature, so I enjoy hearing about her successes and challenges. I create a safe space where she can share those things with me and not be judged,” said Matthew Hawes, Morgan's father.
Her mother has similar feelings about creating a supportive environment.
“I try to give her 100% of whatever she needs, if there is anything she needs to vent about or if she needs someone to listen to or complain to, whether it’s school, homework, or swimming," Tracie Hawes said.
Morgan’s young age is also a challenge in her practice schedule.
“She doesn’t have her driver’s license yet, so I’m taking her all the time; my work schedule has to revolve around her,” Tracie Hawes said.
Luckily, her work schedule is flexible, so she can be there for Morgan whenever necessary and with eight practices a week, there is a lot of driving involved.
While being a professional athlete and high school junior can be quite overwhelming, Morgan manages to keep up with workload.
“Being a student-athlete is pretty difficult because you have to realize you’re not going to be able to get a lot of sleep on some nights because you have to wake up at 4:30 a.m. for morning practice. It’s all about sacrificing a lot of your free time,” Morgan said.
Likewise, because of her dedication to the sport, she is aware of her limitations and is willing to put swimming before traditional high school activities.
“It takes a lot to be dedicated, and sometimes you don’t get to do everything you want to do,” Morgan said.
Besides limiting her own screen time and valuing sleep, her parents also offer support in balancing her extracurriculars and school work.
“We try to be strategic about time management. We may skip a practice depending on how challenging her school work is, or if we feel like she needs a break for a day,” Matthew Hawes said.
Although Morgan limits her commitments, her parents sometimes have to intervene.
“There are certain things we have to say 'no,' to protect her time and peace of mind. At the end, that gives her the freedom to have balance,” Matthew Hawes said.
“Having social time and friendships is so vitally important in a young person’s life.” - Matthew Hawes
As a junior, Morgan also has to think about college. Her first recruiting trip was in September to the University of Notre Dame, one of her top three school choices. She also hopes to get into Princeton University and Northwestern University.
Various coaches have already reached out to Morgan about swimming on their collegiate teams, an notion she highly appreciates.
“It’s nice knowing that other people think you’re very successful. Honestly, I don’t think I’ve reached my peak yet, and I still want to get better as I go along, but seeing yourself succeed or knowing how far you’ve come feels pretty good,” Morgan said.
As college coaches reach out to her because of her success, her current coaches have to adapt their routines and workouts for the same reasons.
“I don’t treat her differently in terms of how she performs as a teammate, but I do treat her differently in sets,” Farley said.
Despite all of the time she spends laboring for success, Morgan still manages to keep a positive attitude, and her kindness rubs off on others and makes her parents proud.
“I never saw myself as determined and driven as her, and it’s amazing to see her still be down to earth, friendly, and kind,” Tracie Hawes said.