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Alumni Spotlights

Our graduates are making outstanding contributions in all aspects of the field, be it teaching and coaching, management, athletic administration and more. Please take a few moments to read about the lives, careers, fond Saint Mary's memories, and advice from some of your fellow alums.

Brendan Blakeley (Class of 2002)

April 2015 MAKin Alumni Spotlight_Brendan BlakeleyBrendan is currently the Athletic Director and Physical Education Chair at Head-Royce School in Oakland.

Greatest professional accomplishment:

It would be easy to point to certain seasons when I've had teams at my school win a lot. There's a lot that goes into teams having "winning" seasons, but more times than not I am most proud of teams that have "successful" seasons. Successful seasons don't have as much to do with winning, but rather with the team performing at or above expectations; consistent improvement over the course of the season; and a high level of satisfaction from players, coaches, and parents. It is also rewarding to help facilitate the growth of programs and see them develop. For instance, in a four-year span we went from having a Track program that had four kids, to having a league championship girls team. That's neat to see, when kids can find their athletic niche and have success with it.

What first attracted you to Saint Mary's College (SMC)?

Geography! I was coaching at UC Davis when I started the program, so the proximity to Davis certainly helped. I also liked the ability to take classes over the summer. I really liked the emphasis on research as well.

What was your favorite SMC experience or moment?

My third year I was in a night class that met one day a week. I had a couple people with whom I carpooled from the Sacramento area. I actually don't recall what the class was, but I enjoyed the opportunity to talk with my fellow car-poolers in our rides about the class, coaching and teaching as a profession, etc. Really, interacting with classmates is a great way to learn, since everyone usually has great and informative experiences to share (both good and bad).  Read More

Eleanor Mills (Class of 2009)

MAKin alum Eleanor MillsEleanor is currently the Senior Manager of Operations at U-JAM Fitness. She is also an active member and new chair of the Graduate Alumni Connection Committee, a subcommittee of the College-wide Alumni Board of Directors, and a member of the Graduate Kinesiology Alumni council.

What first attracted you to Saint Mary's College (SMC)?

The gorgeous campus and the intimate educational experience.

How have your experiences at SMC helped you in your personal and professional life?

SMC taught me the true meaning of both networking and giving back and the great benfits that come as a result of either.

Greatest professional accomplishment:

I am most proud of simply following my passion. My career path has been led by my love for fitness and health and for that reason I've truly enjoyed the work I've done, the places I've been and the people I've met along the way.  Read More

Want to share in the spotlight? Please complete the Alumni Spotlight Questionnaire or send us a link to a short video where you provide a brief autobiography in which you include your work history and anecdotes on how your experiences at Saint Mary's impacted you.  Your spotlight will be featured here on our website and in our next issue of the Quarterly Alumni Newsletter (click here to check out the most recent issue).

Engaging with SMC Graduate Kinesiology (HPER)

Join us for the following events and use the links below to get and stay connected with the department and your fellow alumni, and to gain access to Saint Mary’s exclusive job board GaeLink.