The Telecommunication Center had a treat recently when Olympic Gold Medalist Francena McCorory came for a visit. The Women's 4x400M Relay championship team member was here to tape an episode of "Sports Highlights" that will air on NNPS-TV in February.

Staff members enjoyed meeting an Olympian, and seeing and holding a real Olympic gold medal, which they found to be heavier than expected.

McCorory is from Hampton, and was a track standout at Bethel High School and then Hampton University. Her hard work and determination have won her many accolades in the U.S. and on the world stage.

In 2009, she won the NCAA Women's Indoor Track and Field Championships and came in third in the NCAA Women's Outdoor Track and Field Championships.

In 2010, she went back to the NCAA Women's Indoor Track and Field Championships to defend her title, and won the race by more than a second. The same year, she won the NCAA Outdoor championship.

She finished second at the 2010 USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships with a personal best time of 50.52.

After graduating from HU, McCorory improved her best time to 50.49 when she took second at the USA Outdoor Track and Field Championships. This qualified her for the 2011 World Championships in Athletics -- her first world competition. There she finished in 50.24 in the semi-finals, and took fourth place in the finals. A few days later, she anchored the United States team to a gold medal in the 4×400M relay.

At the Olympic Trials, she qualified for the final and came in third place, which earned her a trip to the 2012 Olympic Games.

In London, the U.S. team won the 4×400M relay by almost four seconds with a time of 3:16.87. The Russians took silver with a time of 3:20.23, and Jamaica won bronze in 3:20.95.

In addition to McCorory, the Olympic gold-medal team team included DeeDee Trotter, Allyson Felix and Sanya Richards-Ross.