Currently, 200 plus boys and girls participate in activities in grades 7 thru 12 in Winter Activities alone. They receive instruction from knowledgeable, quality people such as Tim Bobeldyk, Paul Counter, Tom Pryor, Derek Lieser, Marv Nysetvold, Patrick Freeman, Dennis Anderson, Luke Freeman, Adam Neubarth, Andrew Olson, Nick Henning, Jessamy Busman, Brenda Whitehead, Isaac Harms, Sue Bau, Karen Hildebrandt, Kristen Nau, Kelsey Vogt, Paul Haberman, Joe Biren. Spring and Fall coaches include Dominick Damm, Colleen Freeman, Kate Robinson, Misse Swanson, Bridget Kluis, Tom Whitehead, Craig Gertsema, Kim DeLong, Brian Christensen, Myron Bennett, Henry Veldhuisen, Katie Hoffman, Mike Helgeson, Katie Gillette-Schuur, Janese Siedschlag and Jenna Lemieux. These coaches and advisors rightly emphasize that winning is not the end all but rather knowing how to succeed and continuous improvement are the valuable life skills to take from a season. Other life skills taught through activities include discipline, respect, perseverance, dedication, patience, teamwork, determination, problem-solving, personal responsibility, and the pursuit of excellence.
Our youth and high school coaches promote MCC Schools’ belief that (1) athletics are an integral part of the educational process by providing opportunities and emphasizing goals which are difficult to duplicate or achieve in other activities or later in life, (2) coaches are teachers first and foremost who extend sound teaching and human relations principles from the classroom into the athletic setting, (3) athletics stimulate physical, mental, and social growth through competition, and (4) enforcement of an athletic code is the responsibility of the school, parents, and athletes on a year-round basis.
Quietly behind the scenes, coaches and advisors model consideration of others for youth to emulate by directing kindnesses toward players such as offering a car ride to a tournament or meal money when a player is in need, providing breakfast rolls at a morning practice before school, paying out-of-pocket for a second practice facility when MCC gym spaces are full, playing pickup games with youth at Sunday Open Gym, and simply paying attention to a kid or offering a word of advice or a compliment or an open ear when the coach can tell that is what the youngster needs.
Thank you, high school coaches and advisors, for getting involved and making a difference. Community members, please shake a coach’s hand or give a pat on the back for a job well done.
James Wajer - MCC Activities Director