Grand Rapids Names Jennifer Marchand Director of Academics
Marchand brings with her a wealth of coaching and teaching experience.
(GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN – August 21, 2020) – Total Package Hockey (TPH) Chief Academic Officer Bill Simms recently announced the addition of Jennifer Marchand as the Director of Academics for its Grand Rapids Division.
With her background in coaching and being in an educational environment that requires balance between the classroom and athletics, Simms is confident in how Marchand will be able to adjust and customize the learning experience for each student-athlete.
“Jennifer is a recently certified teacher, and she has a lot of experience working with students as a cheerleading coach,” said Simms. “She’s been working in the school setting and has been a substitute teacher at times in which case you often need to learn how to adjust. She’s definitely presented as having a really good skillset and hit the ground running in Grand Rapids. She’s already contributing immensely to our team.”
Times have been fairly uncertain with the pandemic, especially when it comes to students getting back in the classroom at all levels of education. For Marchand, this was a unique and perfect opportunity to teach.
“I was just really excited to join the team,” said Marchand. “I went to school to become a teacher, but with the current climate, things are a little uncertain right now. To be a part of this opportunity that offers a venue for student-athletes, and it’s really a unique opportunity that I’m excited to be a part of.”
The classroom is evolving almost daily right now, but at the core of Total Package Hockey’s educational offering is fostering a positive learning environment. It’s about individualizing the learning experience to best fit the needs of the student-athlete at TPH.
“TPH allows student-athletes to focus on their training, which is something that they’re so good about, without being bogged down with definitive, hard deadlines,” said Marchand. “This allows student-athletes to combine their passion with their education. With that education, they’re allowed to have more flexibility with it, which allows them to grow with their education and their athletics.”
Flexibility is important, but the student-athletes are still held accountable for what’s expected out of them. This applies not only on the ice or on the playing field, but also in the classroom.
“They’re called student-athletes for a reason,” Marchand said. “They’re students first, athletes second. The biggest thing is to make sure we are focusing on education and using their passion for that sport to keep them accountable. We want them to meet the goals they’re expecting of themselves and what their parents are expecting of them. Athletics is a passion for them, and we want to them to go as far as they can and for as long as they can. At the end of the day, they’re people, and we want them to be knowledgeable and productive members of society.”
Marchand has been on the job as Director of Academics for a short time, but she’s already quickly learned how the positive environment applies to the staff as well as the students.
“I am just so thankful for all of the help and welcomeness I’ve received from everyone,” said Marchand. “When we meet for Zoom calls, we’re all across the country, but we’re so collaborative. It really is just a positive and engaging work environment. This is such a positive place focused on everyone being better and improving.”