My name is Manley Collins also known as Coach Manley. I started a new service year with AmeriCorps through Up2Us Sports in August 2018. I am a physical activity and life skills coach with a running group called Teens Run DC. Teens Run DC participates in District of Columbia public schools and my assigned school is Eliot Hine Middle School.
AmeriCorps transformed my life by making me humble, develop patience with a new community I hardly interacted with during everyday life, and how to live life efficiently without the large salary and fancy items from Corporate America. AmeriCorps has helped me grow plenty of soft skills needed to balance out hardcore skills in my former primary career field of business and technology. AmeriCorps is providing me new avenues of careers, such as coaching or teaching, I would have never thought of where to begin.
Up2Us Sports and Teens Run DC brought me back to the roots of my athleticism and help me understand those concepts of sports and running I was doing, but did not completely understand. All three organizations provided me a new family. I can teach my specialized sport of running and physical activity to the next generation of athletes. For most of my students, I am elated to be being very first coach in sports. For some of my students, I am a big brother for them to listen to what is going with them. For my peers, we can talk the same language or exchange ideas, whether me as a track and field sprinter and the group as middle distance/marathon runners.
Eliot Hine Middle School. participants, participants’ parents or guardians, teachers, staff, and administrators treat me as family and depend on me being there for the kids. The Teens Run DC activities, such as 5K runs, Christmas social events, and one-mile fun run, helps the parents/guardians and kids capture moments they never thought of in their lives. I am proud to have a hand in capturing those moments.