Alumnus Cahill reconnects with teachers, coaches as Educational Support Professional


Priya Maraliga

2015 graduate Jonathan Cahill returns to Algonquin, helping students in the classroom and on the field as an Educational Support Professional and football and baseball coach.

Yahya Ibrahimi, Staff Writer

For educators, returning to their high schools to teach can be an opportunity to give back to the community that raised them. Educational Support Professional (ESP) Jonathan Cahill, a member of the Algonquin class of 2015, says the ability to reconnect with old teachers and to be able to teach students is a dream come true.

After Cahill finished his Bachelors of Science in Sports Management at UMass Amherst, he filled an opening as a member of the football coaching staff at Algonquin, thus beginning his journey as an educator.

“When I moved back home I knew the football coach and… I heard they had an opening in the building for an ESP,” Cahill said. “I thought it was perfect because I get [to use] the sports side of my college degree and also the education side.”

As a member of the faculty, Cahill works closely and creates bonds with both students and teachers. His experience at Algonquin so far has been rewarding. 

“The first thing [I find rewarding] would be reconnecting with old teachers which I had and now being able to collaborate with them in the classroom, that’s really cool,” Cahill said. “The second part is the students… in this position I feel like I’m working with students and I’m helping students with whatever problem they may have in the classroom and on the field.”

Cahill has worked with several teachers and coaches that once taught him including social studies teacher Justin McKay, who was the head football coach when Cahill played. 

“Being on the other side of things and talking to him, that’s pretty cool,” Cahill said.

In high school, Cahill played football and baseball. He also helped start the boys’ rugby team.

“Obviously I wasn’t going to become a D1 athlete, but [majoring in sports management] gave me the opportunity to stay with sports, which is something I have enjoyed my whole life,” Cahill said

Cahill now enjoys coaching football and baseball and he hopes to learn more as a coach.

“The personal knowledge gaining is big time,” Cahill said. “Getting to learn the ins and outs of football… and then getting to pass along that knowledge to the players is rewarding.”

Cahill believes that this upcoming school year as a coach will be a challenge because the football season was moved from September to February due to COVID. Although it is a change, he believes it’s one they’re “up for.” The team is excited to have the opportunity to play at all.  Because they didn’t have a season last year, he’s looking forward to baseball, and hopefully having a season to make up for the lost time.

Not only has COVID caused a shift in some sports seasons, but it has also caused several challenges for coaches. 

“Putting [players] in groups, keeping [players] separated, making sure [player’s] masks are on and in some sports there have been some big rule changes,’ Cahill said. “So it’s been having to readjust; that’s been a big challenge.”

While challenging himself in his career, Cahill is also challenging himself in his personal life. To challenge himself during these unprecedented times, he’s taught himself how to play piano which Cahill claims is “a little challenging and a little different.”