Perspectives Athletic Director Speaks at 2014 National Athletics Directors Conference

December 12-16, 2014
By Vinay Mullick, Director of Athletics and Programs

There are a lot of committed adults at Perspectives Charter Schools who work consistently to ensure that every student receives the highest quality education and enrichment opportunities with the goal of preparing students for college and life. Among the few adults that spend countless hours each week fulfilling this mission is Vinay Mullick, director of athletics and programs. He recently attended the 45th National Athletic Directors Conference and shares his thoughts about this exciting opportunity to speak to his colleagues from around the world about Perspectives’ efforts to provide high quality, urban athletic and enrichment programs right here in Chicago.

My experience: I was lucky to enough to attend the National Athletic Directors Conference in mid-December 2014 at National Harbor, Maryland. The event is hosted by the National Federation of High Schools (NFHS) and the National Interscholastic Athletic Administrators Association (NIAAA). It was my first time attending the yearly event and it was an amazing experience. Almost 1,600 athletic administrators from across the globe assembled together to share best practices and help each other be the best athletic administrators at their respective schools. The main goal of the yearly conference is to do whatever possible to improve the experience for their student-athletes. I received a great deal of professional development, built relationships with countless athletic directors, and also met numerous vendors showcasing cutting edge products that are relevant to Perspectives. I also moderated a forum on what it means to be an Urban Athletic Director. I co-moderated the forum, with Jimmy Lynch, an athletic director from Philadelphia. We talked with more than 45 attendees about what it means to be an Urban athletic director and the unique challenges we face. We shared best practices on how to effectively manage our athletic programs in an urban setting. This forum is just the beginning of NIAAA efforts to meet the needs of urban athletic directors across the country. I was able to share the unique difference that living A Disciplined Life means in the lives of our student-athletes by sharing how our young men and women choose to live by guiding principles both on and off the courts and fields like "be open-minded," "be generous," and "challenge each other intellectually."
What I learned: The conference reinforced the notion that athletic directors all face similar challenges and that we need to be resourceful and pragmatic when addressing these issues. Without a doubt, I will rely on many of the people I met at this conference by learning from their experiences to help make informed decisions in my position. I'm fortunate to have a strong leader in an assistant director of athletics and programs, Tiray Jackson. Together, we work with an excellent group of program managers across five schools to effectively administer over 100 after-school programs that involves nearly 1,300 students.
What I am bringing back: A more global outlook on how to continue to push the Perspectives athletic and after-school programs well into the future!