New Assistant Athletic Director Eager to “Flip the Script”
For Kai Evans, coming to Norfolk Collegiate was an opportunity to flip the script, as he says, and become the kind of coach and mentor who guided him through school.
Evans grew up on Virginia’s Northern Neck playing lacrosse and soccer, especially soccer. He was a four-year starter in both at Christchurch School as well as a club soccer player on one of the state’s best teams. He went on to play the beautiful game as a defender at Virginia Tech, earning a 2004 degree in psychology.
For the last four years, he worked for the YMCA, most recently as the program director for youth and family programs at the Peninsula Metropolitan YMCA. But the lure of taking on the responsibility of being a coach, occupying what is a special role in the lives of so many young athletes, proved too powerful to resist.
So when he learned the assistant athletic director’s job at Norfolk Collegiate was open, he jumped at the chance. “I had been in the YMCA world and out of academia and athletics and I had a craving to get back into it,” he says. “Athletic management is where I would like to go as a young professional. It was the perfect opportunity.”
As the assistant athletic director, Evans is responsible for logistics, including transportation. He will also coach the boys varsity soccer team and teach one period of physical education. Peccie and school administrators, he says, “”sold me on their zeal to get things going in the right direction.”
He also wants to bridge the physical divide between the schools and create an atmosphere of a school-wide community. “I feel like we are on the cusp of really good things,” he says. “There is, for me, a sense of ambition, not a sense of complacency. That’s one of the things that attracted me here.”
For Evans, who played on teams that were successful on the state and national stage, it’s the ties that bind from those days that he remembers and treasures most. “It’s not so much the teams’ achievements, but the relationships made along the way with my teammates from Tech, from high school, from club soccer. It’s the blood, sweat, and tears that you pour into something and do with another person that I cherish the most.”
Evans thinks there is no difference in the traits that allow students to flourish on the fields and in the classrooms. “Sports are not unlike anything else we do in life as far as teamwork, grit, determination, integrity. They’re all things that would make you successful in the classroom as well as on the field or court. That’s my approach. My approach to sports is not any different than my approach as an educator,” he says. “Put your heart and soul into being the best you can be and good things follow.”
“I want my student athletes to realize that grit, determination, and honesty will get you far in athletics and will translate to success in whatever you do.”