Soldiers To Sidelines (STS) recently completed their first Basketball Coaching Certification Seminar virtually. The participating veteran and service members completed the certification to become Soldier Coaches.
The new members of the STS tribe consist of 19 veterans and 8 active-duty service members, representing all branches of military service. "STS is grateful to all the college basketball coaches who supported our certification process and most importantly, to the veterans and service members who put the required time and energy to become certified Soldier Coaches," STS Founder and Executive Director Harrison Bernstein stated.
The virtual seminar required daily attendance to webinars and homework requirements for attendees to obtain their certification. One of the new Soldier Coaches stated in an anonymous survey, "The Soldiers to Sidelines virtual Basketball Coaching Certification Seminar was, hands-down, the best coaching development clinic I have ever gotten to be a part of. They successfully married the best aspects of a traditional coaching clinic with a semester's worth of coaching pedagogy and delivered it in a week. I am proud to be affiliated with this tribe!".
"Candid feedback is a critical part of our learning process and our new group of Soldier Coaches confirmed that we are providing a high-quality remote learning experience," stated Bernstein.
"It was my pleasure to support. A small gesture for all that the Soldier Coaches have done for us," shared Fordham University women's basketball head coach, Stephanie Gaitley, one of the 13 NCAA Division-I head basketball coaches that supported the virtual seminar. STS Basketball Director, Leigh Klein commented, "We could not be more pleased with the support of the college basketball coaching community."
In addition to the 20 Division-I basketball coaches supporting the virtual seminar, Soldier Coaches received testimony from U.S. Army veteran Matt Zosel, men's basketball head coach at Lane Community College, and U.S. Air Force veteran David Grace, former men's basketball associate head coach at Vanderbilt University.
"Hearing the specifics of successful military veterans Zosel and Grace transition from active duty military service into college basketball coaching was inspirational. Coach Grace's amazing progression from coaching youth while still on active duty through high school and AAU to major college basketball to include Oregon State and UCLA, has given me confidence in my transition," stated a new Soldier Coach through the anonymous post-event survey.
U.S. Army veteran and recently certified Soldier Coach, Merle M. McLain, summed up the experience, "Thanks to STS for providing such an awesome format with the STS virtual basketball coaching certification seminar. All of us aspiring coaches were able to learn and grow in our profession and connect with others."