By Nelson Coffin
The way new St. Timothy’s School athletics director Megan Callahan figures it, life can take unexpected twists and turns.
“Sometimes you make choices and sometimes choices make you,” said Callahan, who left a 20-year stint as head field hockey coach at Johns Hopkins University in November and has moved on in a positive manner to her new gig.
The former University of Maryland standout field hockey player took over as athletics director at the Stevenson school on July 10, replacing Kara Carlin, who took a similar post at Friends School.
Callahan said she is excited about the prospect of coaching and taking care of administrative athletics duties — requesting officials, lining up transportation, formulating schedules and managing a host of other chores — when school begins in a couple of weeks.
However, after coaching recruited athletes at Hopkins, she knows some of her field hockey players this season will be playing the sport for the first time.
And that’s fine with her.
“It’s kind of exciting to have players who have never been exposed to the sport,” she said. “I’m used to teaching at the grass-roots level, and these players can avoid bad habits that players who have been playing longer might have. And for me, it’s a fresh start.”
Callahan left Hopkins after compiling a stellar 223-160 record. She also guided the Jays to three Centennial Conference titles and five appearances in the NCAA Tournament in her two decades.
She considered seeking opportunities at the collegiate level, but said “none of them spoke to me.”
Callahan has two kids, ages six and eight, so jumping into another college job was not a priority.
“The thought of having a little more time with my family is very appealing to me,” she said. “But in a lot of ways it will be similar. At Hopkins, I had a lot of crazy-smart kids who had high expectations for themselves in the classroom and used field hockey as a kind of release. It’s kind of the same way at St. Tim’s because it has a high academic reputation, too. I’ll be doing what I did at Hopkins, but just on a different scale. I really want to be a resource for these kids. I’m really excited about it.”