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RESEARCH TRIANGLE PARK -- The North Carolina High School Athletic Association held its spring 2011 Coach-Captain Retreat over the weekend, the 31st in the history of this program.
The event, part of the Association’s Student Services program, was held at the Radisson RTP and attracted students from all over North Carolina. It was one of the largest retreats in the program's history.
Retreat teams include student-athletes who will be captains or leaders of their athletic squads in the coming year, a coach from the school and a parent representative. The retreats are designed to promote the concept of “teamwork.” Issues such as leadership development, alcohol, tobacco and other drugs, violence prevention strategies and academic success are addressed at these retreats, the first of which was held in the spring of ‘95.
The retreats are designed to help student-athletes define leadership qualities, identify key issues that affect them, learn to communicate effectively with other students and adults about these issues, and then to understand what captains can do to use their influence to prevent problems and promote healthy lifestyles.
"The Coach-Captain Retreat is just one example of the tremendous programs offered through the NCHSAA for our member schools," said Davis Whitfield, commissioner of the NCHSAA. "Our staff and the facilitators do a great job of developing the content for the retreats and coordinating the activities, so this program will reach schools and student-athletes all over the state.
Facilitators included the following NCHSAA Student Services Trainers: Mike Brown, retired athletic director from the New Hanover County schools and president of B&M Associates; P.J. Taylor, retired teacher/coach at Williamston High and former safe and drug free schools coordinator for the Martin County Schools who is also an NCHSAA volleyball official; Faye Corbin, teacher and coach at Hope Mills South View High School; Susan Cox, retired athletic director at Perquimans High School and a DREAM (Daring to Role model Excellence as Athletic Mentors) team trainer; Larry Ratliff, teacher and coach at Southern Guilford High School; and Mike Greene, teacher and coach at North Wilkes High School.
Coach-Captain retreats are organized and administered by NCHSAA assistant commissioner Mark Dreibelbis and assistant director Chiquana Dancy.
“Student Services is the ‘value-added’ division of the NCHSAA,” said Dreibelbis. “The Coach/Captain Retreat emphasizes the responsibility of student-athletes to take their leadership skills and implement programs promoting positive life skills and total development through athletics to both their school and community. Having the opportunity to develop these initiatives and assist in their implementation is what Student Services is all about. Our programs make a difference and create winners for life.”
Teams always conclude their retreat experience by developing an action plan, to be taken back and executed in their local school. Among the components of the action plan could be bulletin boards in the school, public service announcements for the school intercom, a community service project, a special newsletter for student-athletes or other school/community ideas generated by the team itself.
Student-athletes and their leaders also participated in a special community service project, "Coaches and Captains Against Hunger." Retreat participants collected canned goods and other non-perishables in their communities and then brought them to the event for donation to the North Carolina Food Bank.
In addition to the staff, there were 126 participants in the retreat, with a total of 92 student-athletes and 34 adults attending. The adult total included 26 coaches or administrators, representing a total of 16 different schools, and eight parents of athletes.
Teams at the retreat represented the following schools:
Fayetteville Jack Britt, Matthews David Butler, Fayetteville Douglas Byrd, Dixon, East Duplin, Newton Fred T. Foard, Hoke County, McDowell, Mayodan Dalton McMichael, North Wilkes, Fayetteville Pine Forest, Saxapahaw River Mill Academy, Rockingham County, Hope Mills South View, Southern Guilford, and Seven Springs Spring Creek.