Dan's philosophy is apparent even after only talking with him for five minutes. Dan always knew he wanted to work in the realm of Athletics. When he was 10 years old, he predictably asked his parents where the newspaper was, wanting to check the sports statistics, keeping a close eye on baseball. He was mesmerized by not just one team, but the culture behind the entire game. In high school, Dan found himself working as a high school sports reporter in his region of New Hampshire, writing sports articles and doing related photography. As a result, Dan was drawn to the highly ranked Kinesiology program at UNH. He aspired to be an athletic trainer.
From the very start of his time at UNH, it became apparent there was to be a huge shift in his extra-curricular activities. It all started with a program he participated in called PROVES. PROVES is a community service program that helps first year students acclimate themselves to campus by moving to UNH one week prior to the incoming first year class. Upon arrival, Dan and his peers found themselves being split into four groups, rotating community service projects in the Seacoast area. They worked in teams toward common goals while interacting with other freshmen. Along with this hard, yet rewarding, work there were nightly social events. Things started to click for Dan. He would go on to serve on the PROVES staff for two years, and to this day, he is still in touch with many of the students & staff.
PROVES immediately started to affect Dan's choices in other areas of his life as well. A friend from PROVES approached Dan about moving from Christensen Hall to Richardson House in the Mini Dorms. Richardson House is a themed community which focuses on community service. Dan soon made the move, and by the end of his freshman year he found himself elected as the 2003/2004 Richardson House Hall Council President. Dan states, "I didn't know anything about hall government. But, I knew that we had an advantage over other residence halls since we had a common goal (community service), which would help hall mates in getting to know each other."
During his career at UNH, Dan has also worked with the women's volleyball team as an athletic trainer. He found that his life started to revolve around the team and discovered there were other interests in his life that were suffering. With the help of his advisor, Dan Sedory, Dan dropped Athletic Training as a major in the fall of his junior year. He knew he still loved sports, but decided to explore different avenues. Dan decided to give education a try. "Even as a junior, I still didn't know what I wanted to do. So, I tried a lot of different things to find the right fit."
Professor Karen Collins recommended Dan for an internship position with the UNH Sports Studies Lab where he helped professors organize internships opportunities, connecting students with internships that fit them. As he helped other students, he started to solidify his passion for educating others.
While reading a book by Illinois Senator, Barack Obama, Dan reaffirmed that he could combine his passions for community service, sports and teaching/education into a major - education. He has found a new passion teaching anatomy to high school students. While doing all of this, Dan has also participated in the Rising Scholars program and found a mentor in Dani Adler of the CFAR center, from whom he has received advice on many occasions. What Dani Adler taught Dan, he will now pass on next year as an academic mentor for the CFAR program. When asked who has been a mentor for him while at UNH, Dan's eyebrows scrunch and he responds, "It hasn't been one or two people. It's been a combination: my Professors, administrators, advisors, athletic trainers, hall directors, resident assistants. They've all helped me on my journey."
Dan's journey at UNH is not complete; he still has a lot to accomplish. Just this semester, Dan learned how to apply for grants and received funding from the UNH Parent's Association in order to purchase supplies for Richardson House and provide better services to the children and families of Forest Park. He will also help even more individuals next year by working for the Department of Residential Life as a Resident Assistant. Dan still doesn't know exactly what he wishes to do career-wise, "Maybe I'll be an Athletic Director at a college or university and do some supplemental teaching. Who knows? The journey will lead me to it."