Who is on the cheerleading team?
We have more than 30 members, including six men. They try out in the fall, with a mix of prior experience. Some have never cheered before, but everyone’s a quick learner.
Are cheerleaders taken for granted?
I’ve heard people say that cheerleading is “a joke.” But we are part of the game-day experience and how Dartmouth shows school pride. The team deserves credit for that. Cheerleading is physically and mentally demanding. Unfortunately, it is not yet an official NCAA sport, but I think that will happen in the future.
What makes a good cheerleader?
Someone who is enthusiastic, confident, and hard-working.
How has cheerleading changed in recent years?
The stunts keep getting harder. The requirement of true physical fitness has become greater.
What are the most common injuries?
In our stunting, we haven’t had any very drastic injuries—knock on wood—but usually the most common one in cheerleading is a head injury.
What’s the team’s fall training schedule?
We practice twice a week and cheer at home football games and typically at one away game. The captains hold a team workout day as well.
How did you get into coaching?
I cheered at Nichols College. We competed at the national championships my senior year. It really pushed me—I was a captain—to continue in a coach position.
How does your work in the investment office compare to cheer coaching?
Being on a team that is supportive and communicative is key. That translates to cheerleading.
Do you psych the team up before a game?
When you walk on the track and you hear the music playing and you see the team warming up, everyone’s already in that amped-up state. My favorite moment is after a game, win or lose, seeing everyone arm in arm singing the alma mater.