Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Augustana Observer

Augie Talks with Coach Mejia

Q: Becoming a collegiate coach takes a lot of love and dedication to the sport, what first got you interested in soccer as more than just a hobby or pastime?
A: “I grew up with the game. My dad was a very good player and he really taught me to be passionate about soccer. I had an opportunity to play professionally in Ecuador after college and that experience really expanded my appreciation for the game. It was then that I knew I wanted to continue my involvement with the game as a career-whether that was as a professional player or coach. When I stopped playing it seemed a logical step to get into coaching”

Q: Why coach women’s soccer versus men’s?
A: “I’ve learned over the years that women absorb information/ instruction at an incredible rate. The women I’ve coached at Augustana have been incredibly competitive and focused individuals. As such, I’ve found that they are often quicker to learn concepts and apply them than the men I’ve coached in my career. I also feel that often women are very cerebral about the game and open to learning new tactical or technical concepts. The women I’ve worked with at Augie have always shown an incredible eagerness to learn and improve. I’ve really enjoyed that atmosphere and the attitude the women I’ve worked with have displayed”
Q: What role do Augustana’s women’s soccer players have in your life?
A: “We often refer to our team as our family. The women in our program are a huge part of my life- they are much like my own children. I feel an incredible responsibility to make sure they are taken care of and given opportunities to grow and learn in ways that will provide them with success when they leave augie and start a career”
Q: What would you say has been the proudest moment you have experienced throughout your career?
A: “On the field, my proudest moment was when we finished conference play undefeated and won the conference tournament. We earned the right took host the NCAA tournament through the elite 8. It was the moment I knew or program had arrived as a national power. Off the field, my proudest moment was when our team traveled to Costa Rica and as part of that trip we did service work at an orphanage. The smiles and emotion from our players and the children during our work there will stick with me forever”
Q: What motivates you, as a coach, to want to do better/ achieve more?
A: “Im very competitive and committed by nature. Im always working to grow personally and learn more about the game. Having an opportunity to try and transfer my knowledge and insight to our players is exciting and motivating in and of itself. Watching our women grow as people and players is one of the most rewarding parts of my job. When I see players grow and succeed it motivates me even more and drives me to work harder to make our program better”
Q: What would you be doing if you were not a soccer coach?
A: “My graduate degree is in Sport Management. So I would most likely would try and work in professional sport–soccer of course! If not that, I would probably pursue something within the music industry. Ive always been passionate about music and the business of event promotion/management”
Q: What is your hope for the soccer program throughout these next few years?
A: “A conference championship and continued success on a regional level and more of a consistent presence on a national level”
Q: If you could choose one thing which the girls will have gained from the program by the time they graduate, what would it be?
A: “Lifelong friendships and memories”


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Augie Talks with Coach Mejia