On the soccer field, a team captain is usually one of the most experienced players, a senior most likely, wearing a yellow armband for easy identification. But with some guidance from the College’s Garthwait Leadership Center (GLC), the Bullets women’s soccer team has tried to break from the norm and develop a whole team of leaders.
“The players hear the coaches’ voices so often that we didn’t want them to feel like we were trying to manipulate a way just to win soccer games,” said Head Coach Matt Garrett. “We felt we had a real opportunity with the Garthwait Leadership Center.”
Over the course of the last academic year, the members of the women’s soccer team engaged in a number of activities arranged by Andy Hughes, director of the GLC, and his staff of leadership mentors. The student-athletes took a look at their individual core values and strengths and how those values and strengths related to the team as a whole. It was a key learning experience for young women in the midst of discovering their potential on and off the field.
“At first, no one knew how important these meetings would be,” said Tobi Goss ’14. “As we progressed, we began to understand there doesn’t have to be one sole leader. We might have people named captains, but I think that everyone will be a leader in their own individual way.”
With the typical leadership arrangement on the field in past seasons, the Bullets have come up just short of a conference title and national playoff bid. Garrett hopes the recent leadership activities will be just what his team needs to get over the edge.
“If you can have eleven leaders on the field, it will make a drastic difference for the team,” said Garrett. “That may be the difference for us going from second in our conference to winning the conference and going to the national tournament this year. That’s what we’re really looking to do.”
Article from the Fall 2013 issue of the Gettysburg Magazine.
Founded in 1832, Gettysburg College is a highly selective four-year residential college of liberal arts and sciences with a strong academic tradition that includes Rhodes Scholars, a Nobel laureate and other distinguished scholars among its alumni. The college enrolls 2,600 undergraduate students and is located on a 200-acre campus adjacent to the Gettysburg National Military Park in Pennsylvania.
Article by Corey Jewart, associate director of athletic communications, 717.337.6323.
Contact: Mike Baker, assistant director of communications, 717.337.6521.
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