Former boarding student Dylan Sheridan '02 returns to Western Reserve Academy as the new Varsity Boys Lacrosse Coach and Assistant Director of Advancement Services in the Advancement Office. The 2002 graduate first arrived at WRA in 1997 and credits it as the place where he first put his hands on a lacrosse stick.
After helping his Reserve teammates to three Ohio high school state championship games, Sheridan has flourished as a college lacrosse coach and joins the WRA staff after most recently coaching at The Ohio State University.
We sat down with Sheridan to learn more about him and what drew him to work for WRA.
What brought you back to Hudson?
I have been back to Hudson several times for WRA alumni functions. As a college coach, I always enjoyed coming back to recruit at the MSLA tournament, which was hosted annually at Reserve. Then in 2018, I moved to Hudson when my wife took a job as Head Women's Lacrosse Coach at Kent State University. We will continue to reside in Hudson right near campus.
Can you share a favorite memory from your time as a student at WRA?
I have so many! Camping on the cross country hill, winning IPSL and beating University School in football in 2000 and 2001. Picking up my first lacrosse stick and winning a State Championship in lacrosse in 2001. Plus, learning from incredible faculty and staff like Skip Flanagan, Tom Davis (English), Marie Fiedler (Chemistry), Señor Fraser (Spanish), Russ Hansen (Biology) and John Haile (English).
What drew you to work at WRA?
The chance to serve. This school gave me the opportunity of a lifetime. I'm also drawn to the direction of Reserve under Suzanne Buck's leadership and the vision she and her team have for the future of both the school and the lacrosse team.
How do you describe your new roles?
As a coach, I will be wearing many hats. Recruiting, developing and advising our lacrosse student-athletes is my primary charge, but I plan to serve the broader student body in any fashion possible. I will also be working alongside our Advancement Office to assist with building and maintaining a strong connection between the school and our amazing alumni.
In what ways are you a Pioneer?
I was the first in my immediate family to attend college and earn a degree. As an assistant coach, I helped the University of Denver Pioneers men's lacrosse team reach unprecedented success. As a Head Coach, I started the program at Cleveland State University, the only Division I program in Northeast Ohio. I also most recently coached at the only other Division I program in Ohio, The Ohio State University.
What quality do you admire most in student-athletes?
The ability to understand and own your role. In my opinion, the student-athletes who figure this out create deep and meaningful relationships with teammates and coaches by putting others first. These athletes typically experience incredible success — on and off the field.
What are you looking forward to the most?
Ringing the Victory Bell! Winning games is the outcome of a process that requires love, persistence, respect, teamwork, brotherhood, selflessness, hard work and discipline. It's symbolic of many of the traits we hope to instill into our students here at Reserve and the legacy of success and tradition of excellence that has existed at Reserve for a long time.
Who or what inspires you?
So many outstanding coaches and faculty members went out of their way to make sure I was successful while I was a student at WRA. I'm excited to steward the next generation of Pioneers and do my best to emulate those people who helped guide me during my time at Reserve.
What are some of the biggest challenges facing schools in the era of COVID-19?
Uncertainty is obviously a huge obstacle. That said, we have a tremendous leadership team. Their response has been innovative and incredibly successful since the beginning of the pandemic. I've been impressed to watch them work to find new and creative ways to serve our students while staying true to delivering on our mission.