LET’S GO TIGERS: THS advisor, coach has a happy look

Many challenges that high school juniors and seniors face as they prepare to graduate.

One of those challenges is what they want to do with the rest of their lives, whether it’s going to college or a vo-tech institution, joining the military, or whatever.

When Mandi Parish was a senior at Bristow High School, she was a cheerleader, but her big ambition was to get into the cosmetology field. So she took a cosmetology course in high school, and after graduating in 2005, she went to cosmetology school for a year before deciding it wasn’t for her.

Most people reading this are probably wondering who Mandi Parish is, so go back to 2013. That was the year Parish married Josh Stafford and became Mandi Stafford, a household name at Tahlequah High School. Stafford is the high school counselor and cheering coach. The Staffords have two children, Mallori, 8, a student at Greenwood Elementary, and Luke, 3, who attends A Bright Start Developmental Center in Tahlequah.

Now, returning to her early years, after giving up on her idea of ​​being a cosmetologist, Stafford enrolled at Northeastern Oklahoma A&M in Miami, focusing on becoming a social worker, and earned an associate’s degree. of NEO in 2008.

That summer, something happened that changed Stafford and his goals forever.

“I worked at an Upward Bound summer camp in 2008, working with high school kids,” Stafford said. “We talked to them one-on-one about making decisions. We told them that making the decision to go to college, technical school or whatever was not that scary. After working at this camp, I knew I wanted to be a school counselor.”

“When I started at Northeastern State University in Tahlequah that fall, my studies were aimed at becoming a school counselor. I never changed direction, I never changed specialty, because I knew that was where I wanted to be,” she said.

Stafford graduated from NSU in 2010 with a Bachelor of Arts and received her Masters in School Counseling in 2012.

That fall, she became a counselor at Tahlequah High School, a position she still holds 10 years later.

During the 2013–14 school year, Stafford stepped in as a backup high school coach, as the original high school coach was on maternity leave.

“But when she didn’t come back, I stayed for a year as a junior high school coach and then went on maternity leave with Mallori,” Stafford said. “When I came back, I was a freshman coach for a year, and the next year they didn’t have a freshman team. I became a varsity assistant coach for three years, and I am now in my third year as a head coach.

Most people probably don’t realize that cheerleaders have coaches – just sponsors who oversee things, make sure everything is taken care of, and all the cheerleaders maintain their grades and things like that. There is much more than that.

A cheer coach ensures members are ready for secondary cheering. Cheerleaders make secondary cheers for football, basketball and for home wrestling matches.

“We start the summer, in July, to learn a routine. We have someone teaching them the routine, but it’s my job to make sure they’re ready to compete in September,” Stafford said. “Then after that competition is over, we have another competition which is called Game Day, which is like things you would see them doing at a football game, so it’s my job to supervise them there. training to make sure they’re ready for this.”

Tahlequah’s cheerleaders are chosen in tryouts in March. They have to show their falling and jumping, and they have to show Stafford, assistant coach Melissa Dotson and the college coach some encouragement, just to get a third set of eyes watching the tryouts.

Many schools bring in players or varsity coaches, or other high school coaches, to judge tryouts and choose those to serve on the cheer squad. Tahlequah does things differently.

“I started from the same premise that basketball coaches use,” Stafford said. “No third party comes to tell them who their team will be. I think if they can choose their own team, I should be able to choose who my team is.”

“We are looking for individual skills in jumping and somersaulting. I also need them to know how to shout. It seems like a very mundane thing, but it’s very difficult to teach someone the right way to shout,” she said. “We are looking for emotion, but the other element is that, just like in other sports and their different positions, we have positions to fill.

A good example of this would be when a football coach needs an offensive lineman, he doesn’t waste his time watching a group of five to 10 150-pound kids, or a basketball coach who has need a playmaker doesn’t start looking at the 7-0, 310-pound center.

Stafford said the cheer squad must have a number of backs, fliers, main bases, side bases, and they must have an equal number of all of those positions.

She explained the positions. Airmen were the ones in the air, the back seat is the one behind the stack usually holding the ankles, the main base has the most weight and the side base is the one that stands to the side to give extra support.

“We have to have a number of each of those places in order to build a team. We can’t compete with 17 drivers, so we also have to look at their stacking and what they bring to the table in that regard,” Stafford said.

It is important that each member realizes that they represent Tahlequah High School at all times, whether on or off the field. Once they’re on the team, they’re held at a higher level than the average student, Stafford said.

The hardest part of being a cheer coach is bringing together 22 different personalities, each with different things going on every day, figuring out how to put it all together and make them a team that will do their best. , every day. .

“I have very hard workers,” Stafford said. “We’re trying to change the stereotype of what people normally think of when they think of cheerleaders. We really try to make sure they’re kind and respectful, that when we go out to eat, for example, they pick up their own trash and don’t expect someone else to do it I want them to be where when they graduate someone is going to say ‘Oh, you were a cheerleader girl from Tahlequah? I know you’re going to be a hard worker. That’s my goal for them in life.”

Several Tahlequah cheerleaders continued to cheer in college. Currently, two are active varsity cheerleaders, including 2020 graduate Aubrey Baker, who cheers for the University of Oklahoma Sooners, and 2022 graduate Ally Arnall, who cheers for the NSU RiverHawks.

“I don’t plan to do anything else. I plan to be here long term. I’m probably going to retire as a school counselor. I have time left, but I like what I do and I love helping kids,” Stafford said.

Is it free to live on an Indian reservation?

Although the BIA has helped Native American families find housing, these houses are not free. It is common for Indigenous families on reservations to make housing payments to the BIA. Read also : First Take Travels to The Star in Frisco for the Dallas Cowboys’ Inaugural Blue Carpet and Season Kickoff. Housing and Urban Development (HUD) also funded repairs to Native housing and homes.

What are the advantages of living on an Indian reservation? Brienne explains the benefits of living on a reserve: “We don’t pay the same taxes (we still pay to some extent) and we get housing assistance, which means when our houses start breaking down, someone one is guaranteed to come and repair for free.

Can you move to an Indian reservation? To live on private land, contact the Bureau of Public and Indian Housing (PIH). To live on a reservation, contact a local Tribal Designated Housing Entity (TDHE). Find your public housing counseling agency online or call 1-800-569-4287.

Jaguar announces executive and additional staff promotions
To see also :
JACKSONVILLE, Fla. – The Jacksonville Jaguars today announced the promotion of Chad…

What is the zip code for Tahlequah Oklahoma?

What are the first 2 digits of your postal code? The first digit denotes a large area, which ranges from zero for the northeast to nine for the far west. The next two digits are the code for a central post office in that region. On the same subject : Excitement building for the Northwestern Wildcats and Nebraska Cornhuskers American football game at the Aviva. The last two digits designate small post offices or postal areas.

What is Tahlequah Oklahoma famous for? Tahlequah has the distinction of being the capital of the Cherokee Nation and the United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians.

How can I find my local postal code? If you have an address or partial address, you can find the zip code through USPS Zip Code Lookup, a tool on the US Postal Service website. You can also search by city or state, or find all cities that are part of a particular zip code.

To see also :
Posted at 4:00 p.m. on Tuesday, December 6, 2022Just days after seeing…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *