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West Campus student coaches high school water polo, swimming teams

12/12/2011 (Archived)

For many college students, keeping up with their classes is an exhausting exercise that requires a full and finitely-focused commitment – especially when enrolled in a doctorate level program.

CA Molica AndersonWest Campus 7Q student Molica Anderson, however, not only is active in multiple Palmer-related extracurricular activities, the Cypress, Calif., native has demonstrated incredible multi-tasking skills by also coaching two after-school sports programs at Piedmont Hills High School (PHHS) in San Jose, Calif.

A life-long active athlete, Molica grew up swimming and surfing along the southern California coast. While attending UC-San Diego, she won awards in swimming and ultimate Frisbee, and served as vice president of the Surf Club.

Molica has won awards in lifeguard and ocean competitions, regionally and nationally, and she has also ventured to South America, where she provided volunteer lifeguard services on crowded beaches in under-served areas.

Since initiating her chiropractic studies at Palmer’s West Campus in 2009, Molica has served as class representative, is a member of the Campus Guides, and is an executive officer of the Associated Student Government as well as the Sports Council. She’s also been active in the Triathlon Club and the Sun and Snow Club, plays on the indoor soccer team, and attends sports-related seminars.

While such a busy schedule may present a time-management challenge for some, Molica just completed her second season as coach of the PHHS girls’ water polo team, and she’s now preparing for her third season as coach of the boys and girls swimming teams. CA Molica Anderson and Dr. Terry Schroeder

“I have a fear of missing out, so I like to do it all. I love everything in which I’m involved, and I can’t imagine giving anything up,” says Molica, who won three swimming medals at the 2010 ChiroGames in Florida.

Molica’s motivational coaching style inspired the PHHS girls’ water polo team to a 10-3 record this season, which landed the Pirates a play-off berth for the first time in several years.

“My freshman year, we only won one game; I attribute much of the turnaround to Coach Molica,” said senior player Kelsey Chan. “We appreciate everything she does. She’s like a coach and a big sister. She’s really inspired me. One day I hope to be like her, making time for others, even when you have a really busy schedule.”

Molica receives a nominal stipend for her coaching duties. However, given the number of hours she devotes to her teams, it’s obvious her motivation is not monetarily influenced.

“I absolutely loved seeing the girls improve throughout the season, individually and as a team,” said Molica, whose father’s chiropractor helped her avoid needing surgery for a high school swimming injury, which prompted Molica to pursue a chiropractic career. (Inspired by her positive experience, she also plans to propose a research study on chiropractic’s effectiveness for treatment of shoulder impingement syndrome, aka “swimmer's shoulder.”)

“I love working with athletes and would love to coach throughout my career," said Molica. "Being a positive influence on motivated people is incredibly rewarding. As a coach and as a chiropractor, I want to possess the skills and knowledge to help every person reach their full potential, so he or she can achieve their peak performance.”

Photo 1: West Campus student Molica Anderson at a recent Piedmont Hills High School water polo game with her team. 

Photo 2: Molica Anderson and West Campus graduate Dr. Terry Schroeder. Molica presented Dr. Schroeder with a water polo ball signed by members of her high school team. Dr. Schroeder is the coach of the U.S. men's national water polo team, which recently won at the Pan American Games in Guadalajara.