Last night the Hawkettes Dance Team had an amazing performance at the Wright County Conference Kick Meet, and they took home a well-deserved first place. As one of their coaches, I of course could not be more proud of them. However, the overwhelming sense of pride I have in this team dates back much farther than last night.
Thirteen years ago, I was beyond excited to accept the job as MWHS Dance Team Coach. The team at that point struggled with dance technique, and didn’t really know what success felt like. However, they had the enthusiasm, drive and eagerness to learn that any coach would dream of. It took a few years, and an unimaginable amount of effort, but soon we worked our way up and became contenders. I’ll never forget that first time, in 2004, that the Hawkettes made it to the State Tournament. I had never felt such pride in my life.
Looking back on my thirteen years of coaching, I love thinking about the connections that I have been able to make with my dancers. I am so proud of my dance team alumni, and I miss working with each of them so much. I have always tried to teach them as much (if not more) about life as I do about dance. Two of the alumni that I am most proud of, Emily (Bryce) Gibson and Lexie Warlof, are now Hawkettes coaches themselves. I am so grateful that I get to coach alongside these two amazing people.
Every year I have been a coach, I have been more and more proud of my team. And it’s not just due to the success that they’ve had or the amazing dancers that they have become. In fact, their success is only a small part of why I am so proud to coach this team. There are so many bigger, more important things, that make me proud.
The Hawkettes are excellent ambassadors for our school in many ways: they proudly represent MWHS at dance competitions, at other athletic events, and at various community appearances. They conduct themselves with maturity, grace and humility wherever they go, and they represent our school in a way that would make every community member proud.
The Hawkettes hold an annual Junior Hawkettes Camp every year, and I always feel so much pride in my team during this event. During this week the Hawkettes become amazing teachers and make it so fun for the younger dancers. So many of them were Junior Hawkettes themselves, and I take so much pride in seeing how far they have come.
While I am so proud of what these dancers do throughout their community, I am even more proud of what they do out on the dance floor. They truly know what it means to be a unified team (they have SO much fun being together and performing with one another), and that team unity shows in their dancing. At practices, I am always astounded by the drive they have, the initiatives they take on independently (without their coaches having to tell them to do so), and the extremely positive attitudes that I see day in and day out with this team.
I find myself thinking every year about my current team, and how it’s never going to be THIS good again. I find so much joy in working with my team every single year, that it’s easy to think that it can’t get any better. But it does. Every year I enjoy my job as Hawkettes Dance Team Coach more and more. Every year I am more and more proud...not just of how they do, but of who they are. They are one of the classiest groups of young women around, and I truly love being their coach.
2013-14 Hawkettes Dance Team
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