What is your favorite part about coaching your team?

Our senior leadership has been tremendous! I have 25 seniors on the team and each has made an impact on those around them. I look forward to each practice and I have enjoyed watching them grow as runners and confident, strong women!

How have your coaching techniques changed this season due to COVID-19?

We do not spend anytime in the school outside of the school day and we do our COVID-19 screening every day. The busing is a little different; we have a few students who ride to and from meets with their parents. As far as practices I have tried to keep things as close to normal as possible.

In your mind, what traits make a good leader?

I think there are several types of leaders, some are the performance leaders that people look to because they are your top kids, there are others who help set the culture of the team, others are the social leaders who keep people involved and others are organizational leaders that are willing to do anything that is asked to keep things moving smoothly. I also think that some of the more overlooked leaders may not be your top kids but can relate to many on the team and help people feel loved and important. I never have captains on my team; instead I talk to the seniors about roles and their importance to make the team theirs. Every year the team has a little different feel but the closeness that develops is because of the leadership of our seniors!

How do you think the current COVID-19 environment has impacted athletes on your team and across the state?

I know that as a team we appreciate every day. I think our work ethic has been better because we never knew if it could be our last. 

What have you have learned from your time coaching in Iowa as a member school of the IGHSAU?

I think my biggest lesson isn't about wins and losses but focusing on the athletes that I get to work with. I appreciate the amount of work that athletes put into our sports and how those lessons last a lifetime. We know how to celebrate the good times, we learn from the bad times and appreciate those who were by our sides.

What is your favorite inspirational quote?

"When you can't control what's happening, challenge yourself to control the way you respond to what's happening. That's where your power is!"

What advice would you share with student-athletes just getting started in athletics?

Find your passion, sometimes you have to try new things to find things that you love.

- Spotlight written by Noah Christensen, Waukee APEX Associate

IGHSAU Coach Spotlights are created by high school students in Waukee High School's APEX program. The IGHSAU is thankful for its partnership with Waukee APEX to create meaningful content to share with our member schools, student-athletes, coaches, and fans. To learn more about Waukee APEX, click here.