By Sarah Kinsley
A different face will be on the sidelines of the Sharks’ volleyball court this year. Alesia Vaccari, of Winsted, Connecticut, is the new Head Coach of the Simmons College Volleyball Team.
Kelly Last, a third year at Simmons and a volleyball player, said two traits that make a good coach are dedication and knowledge.
“She played at Springfield College and was outstanding there. Her dedication- she always puts the team before everything she does. She makes practice enjoyable, while working hard,” said Last.
Vaccari is a 2006 graduate of Springfield College, where she holds the record for assists (5196) and service aces (321). She is also eighth for digs (1196). In 2004, she was the New England Women’s and Men’s Conference Player of the Year.
For the last two years, she worked as the Assistant Coach at Clarkson University. In 2010, she and her head coach received the Liberty League Coaches of the Year Award.
A job with the opportunity to lead a team with such potential drew her to Simmons, Vaccari said.
“She definitely cares about the team,” said Last. “She will stop us if we are doing something wrong and work with individuals to make things right. She’s easily approachable for any problems. I’ve been to her office and we looked at game footage to see problem areas. I’ve never done that with other coaches.”
“I am so thrilled to have Alesia on staff,” said Director of Athletics, Ali Kantor, on the Simmons Athletics webpage. “I truly believe she has the skills, enthusiasm and the commitment to the Simmons mission that will take our volleyball program to the next level.”
“She’s a huge asset to the team,” said Last. “Watch out for Simmons!”
Vaccari advises Simmons students to keep meeting new people and to enjoy college because it really is the best years of your life.
“Simmons is a great place for young, powerful women to grow,” Vaccari said.
Aside from volleyball, Vaccari is a yoga teacher, Body Pump certified, and a massage therapist. Her favorite place to hang out is the Natick Mall, since she enjoys shopping.