It was in the Salt Lake City Convention Center, at Nationals July 2003, and I was standing on court 36 watching 8th graders…this was before recruiting 8th graders was the thing to do. All of a sudden I had a moment…A moment of how did I get here?
How did I get from my passion for sports and what it adds to a girl’s life to if I had an 8th grade daughter, would I really want her to be here? The answer was no… I would want her enjoying July with her family and friends.
I can remember that moment like it was yesterday. Two years later, I resigned from college coaching and left my office of 13 years with my purse and a small box. I was exhausted. I had coached for over 20 years and no longer did the reason why I got into coaching match with why I was coaching.
Growing up, my Mom used to read Erma Bombeck’s column in the newspaper. Erma was a funny columnist and looked at life with a half glass full kind of attitude. She died pretty suddenly of cancer and young in life.
She was the one who taught me the phrase, “if I had to do it over again”…
Erma’s favorite one liner to complete was “If I had to do it over again…. I’d eat dessert first.”
A few years after I left coaching, I was no longer tired and I asked this question to myself…”if I had to do it over again…what would I do differently…. besides of course, eat dessert first?”
When I started a new career with FCA in 2014, my years of recruiting athletes and spending endless hours and weekends at club tournaments were deep in my thoughts. In beginning FCA Volleyball, I had many conversations with parents and athletes about club volleyball. The main questions centered around those conversations were:
- Is club really worth the financial burden and the time it takes?
- What is really driving the club schedule and cost associated with it?
- Is there a better way to do club that is focused on the well-being of the whole athlete-physical, mental, and spiritual?
I absolutely know that it can be done an “athlete centered” way!
While fielding this questions, I knew the Lord had positioned me to sow the seeds and when I met Jenni Soehn, I knew she was the one to lead out this next chapter for FCA Volleyball.
Jenni has had a multitude of experiences as an athlete and coach that has equipped her to create and lead an “athlete centered” FCA club. Jenni lives out the FCA core values in excellence, integrity, serving and teamwork. I have observed Jenni living Colossians 1:10, “ so as to walk in a manner worthy of the Lord, fully pleasing to Him: bearing fruit in every good work and increasing in the knowledge of God.”
Jenni understands how quality coaches ensures the well-being of athletes. Quality coaches ensure the physical, mental and spiritual growth of the student-athlete. It takes a special combination of qualities to teach and coach the heart of an athlete.
Jenni has a put together a tremendous foundational team of coaches that share in the same vision of an “athlete centered” club through FCA. These coaches have lived the club life as coaches and parents of athletes so they also have an vital prospective.
One of Billy Graham’s famous quotes is “A coach will impact more young people in a year than most will impact in a lifetime.”
When a family invests in the FCA Volleyball Club, they will receive an intentional effort on providing an environment of serious training for their daughter. This club will be unique because of the vision, mission and coaches that will lead your daughter.
There is no better person to lead this out in this day and time than Jenni Soehn and her team of coaches.