Vanderbilt University Athletic Department

Strength and Conditioning Coach Intern

January - March 2020 • Nashville, TN

What I liked

Every day I saw great examples of professional conduct among staff and found that the environment was overall positive regardless of outside circumstances. Even in the face of conflict, the coaches practiced respectful, honest and patient manners of resolving it. Besides good communication and respect being practiced by everyone there, the environment was also organized and functional, making it very supportive of our goal to strengthen and condition athletes in a time efficient manner with minimal distractions. It was refreshing to observe such a supportive environment and having the opportunity to take part in it taught me a lot about my own social skills and how to apply them in a professional environment. Since I’m quite an extrovert, it was important to be approachable while also establishing appropriate boundaries so that the athletes viewed me as a leader and not only as a peer.

What I wish was different

I wish the internship had not been cut short by COVID-19 cancellations and I would have preferred the internship to be paid but honestly, the experience was invaluable and I would do it again in a heartbeat.


I learned that coaching is a very high maintenance career that requires constant research and daily adjustments to unforeseen schedule changes that, as a coach, you must be prepared to accommodate and adjust your program to. My advice for you is, never stop enhancing your S&C knowledge and refining your skills, and always stay flexible and prepared to adapt.
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