Chanel Brissett is a young woman with uncommon speed and a smile she typically wears even during the most serious of track meets.

On Tuesday morning, the Cheltenham star could barely hide her joy and felt no need for subterfuge or theatrics.

Clad in cardinal and gold and flanked by jubilant friends, family, and teammates, Brissett signed her national letter of intent to attend the University of Southern California.

While some student-athletes choose dramatic revelations, Brissett wore a USC hat and shirt to school.

"This means the world to me," she said. "This is all I've been thinking about since I was younger. I just thought, 'I need to get a scholarship to a school of my dreams' . . . This is just everything to me."

Brissett, who competed in the U.S. Olympic track and field trials in Oregon last summer, set a Pennsylvania record in the 100-meter hurdles at the PIAA championships last season.

Kentucky, Florida, USC, and Florida State were among her final choices. Brissett, who comes from a family of sprinters, hopes to study business at USC.

"I think mostly it was the education, not just track," she said. "When I went on the visit, a lot of the girls seemed very focused to me. I had a lot of fun, and there was a lot of team bonding."

Brissett's brother, Christian, also a Cheltenham graduate, is a sophomore sprinter at Iowa. Her father, Delroy, and her mother, Sheryl, were both sprinters in Jamaica.

"This has been a long time coming," said Delroy, who added that his daughter at one point had 38 scholarship offers. "She worked hard, and I'm just glad to see her enjoying the moment."

Brissett continues a line of successful track stars produced by Cheltenham.

Coach Kelly Jensen cited Katelyn Jackson, now a freshman sprinter at UCLA, and Ciara Leonard, now a sophomore hurdler at Virginia, as recent examples of those who have mentored Brissett.

Her hard work, humility, and competitiveness, Jensen said, have been examples for those he hopes will follow her path.

"That's why I think she's going to be a success," Jensen said. "Because I've been around some successful athletes, and they know where they came from. They know it's going to take hard work, but they don't shy away from competition."

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