Meczywor to Focus on Whole Student as New Hoosac Valley AD

By Stephen DravisiBerkshires.com Sports
 
ADAMS, Mass. — Wardrobe adjustments will not be the only challenge facing Hoosac Valley High School's new athletic director.
 
But it is one of the most immediate concerns.
 
"I have to definitely stock up on my Hoosac gear," said Molly Meczywor, who this summer traded in her Drury blue for the Hurricanes' red.
 
Meczywor, a longtime teacher and administrator in North Adams, is no stranger to the Blue Devils' rival, where, among other things, she coaches a cooperative girls lacrosse team that draws players from both schools.
 
But her ties to the Adams-Cheshire Regional School District go deeper than that.
 
"Ultimately, it came down to my kids," said Meczywor, who lives in Adams. "My three kids will up there now.
 
"My son is going to be a junior, and he and I had a conversation. He said, ‘I really want you to come over.' It was a good family decision, and something felt right about this. It's a new adventure."
 
As an AD, Meczywor wants to help Hoosac Valley students prepare for whatever adventures await them in life.
 
"My focus will be on the college/career readiness piece and how we prepare kids to lead happy and successful lives," she said.
 
To that end, Meczywor wants to start a student-leadership council to help develop leadership skills among student-athletes.
 
"At Drury, we started a student ambassador group that was very similar," she said. "We brought kids through a day's training of what it means to be a leader, asked the kids to reflect on their own leadership styles.
 
"The whole purpose is for captains this year or next year to have the opportunity to make their teams more successful and more cohesive."
 
Now that Hoosac Valley is transitioning to a new model that has students starting in Grade 4 on the campus, it is more important than ever for high school student-athletes to be strong role models, Meczywor said.
 
Forty current student-athletes were identified by the school's coaches as candidates for the leadership council, and most have committed to come to the school on Thursday for an initial meeting.
 
"My hope is we'll meet once a month, and we have our fall preseason parents meeting on the 22nd, and I hope the leadership council will be a big part of it, providing information, especially for the new parents," Meczywor said.
 
After more than two decades up the road serving in a variety of capacities — including three years as A.D. — at Drury, Meczywor is excited for the opportunity ahead.
 
"Drury is a good school, and it's been good to me for 21 years," she said. "It was just one of those epiphanies where I wanted to do something different."