Athletic Council builds stronger leaders


Jonny Ratner

Junior captain Nick Alcock throws the ball in play against Nashoba on Oct. 26. In addition to being a captain, Alcock has the opportunity to participate in leadership workshops held by the Athletic Council and outside workshops from the MIAA as a student ambassador.

Liza Armstrong, Online Editor

Starting this fall, athletic council will begin leadership workshops aimed at fall captains.

According to Athletic Director Mike Mocerino, the captains were invited to participate in “leadership classrooms” throughout the year put on by the council to learn skills that can be used in and out of the classroom. In addition to this, the captains will hopefully increase the number of participants on athletic council by having captains continue on past their season. 

The idea was inspired based on the external workshops that student ambassadors, student-athletes that represent Algonquin at various MIAA and Mid-Watch league events, attend. 

“I thought it would be a good idea not only to incorporate anyone that would be interested in athletic council …[but] to also incorporate the same dynamics with the fall captains,” Mocerino said. “I talked to the coaches. I talked to some of the athletic council members from last year, and they thought it would be a good idea to not only include athletes that are captains, but now incorporate, and turn it into almost a workshop, leadership classroom that meets once or twice a month.”

In the past, the council has put on a captains’ breakfast, where each season’s captains can learn about leadership.

“We thought as a group that the captains had more responsibilities than just their stuff at practice, and we wanted to make sure that they got some leadership quality skills ” senior and athletic council executive member Liz DeVarney said.  “We’ve always done the captains’ breakfast which is where the captain’s learn leadership skills [from] people that come in and talk, but now we’re going to teach them throughout the year, so they can incorporate it to their teams.”

According to Mocerino, captains can also become active members of the council as they will continue the work of their various committees that has been done in the past, such as school spirit, public relations or game day policies.

Currently, workshops are planned out to be once or twice a month, and all of them will be internal.

The first workshop, which had a focus on self improvement, took place on Oct. 3.  According to Mocerino, participants focused on two questions: What does it mean and please reflect on, only worry about what we can control and what we can’t? And Be a better person.

“[We wanted participants to take away that] when I wake up in the morning, think about what I can do for others before I think about what I can do for myself, Mocerino said. “Now, we do that both individually, and we relate that to a team atmosphere I think walking away from there, if the kids are able to use the concepts we talked about on the field or in the classroom, then we’re gonna be a success.”

Student ambassador and girls’ soccer captain senior Lucy Gauvin believed that they are gaining valuable leadership skills from these workshops.

“They will help me reflect on what I’ve done and how I’ve acted as a captain so far, as well as talk to other captains to learn from them too,” Gauvin said. 

Student ambassador and boys’ soccer captain junior Nick Alock agreed with Gauvin.

“I have learned that being a leader isn’t always fun,” Alcock said. “Being a captain takes on a lot of responsibility as your teammates are going to look at you when we are down. I think that going to these leadership conferences has taught me how to hold people accountable, but holding people accountable in a way that is still positive and upbeat.”

Workshops and athletic council are open to all student athletes as the main goal is to better the local athletic community, but the main focus will stay on those in leadership positions.

“I think that captains need to learn leadership skills because that’s why they were picked, so hopefully all the captains can understand the reasons that they were picked and things that they can do with their teams that make them more connected and more united as a whole,” DeVarney said.