UBC high-performance coaches lead athletes at 2023 Canada Games in PEI

The University of British Columbia and the UBC School of Kinesiology established a Masters of High Performance Coaching and Technical Leadership (MHPCTL) 10 years ago to raise the professional standard of coaches in Canada.

“We are thrilled to see our graduates and current students leading athletes at the Canada Games in PEI,” said David Hill, UBC Adjunct Professor and Director – System Enhancement with Canadian Sport Institute Pacific. In total, nine UBC alumni and current students are leading athletes at the games in various sports, including Karate, Gymnastics, Speed Skating, Badminton, Hockey, Freestyle Skiing and Cross Country Skiing, and representing Quebec, Ontario, Saskatchewan and British Columbia. 

“Canada Games is a critical entry point to high performance sport in Canada, and it is great to see our students having a positive impact in their respective disciplines,” said Maria Gallo, UBC Professor of Teaching and MHPCTL program supervisor. “Major games are a great opportunity for athletes and coaches to experience other sports, and we had 10 coaches representing Canada at the Tokyo Olympics,” she said. Gallo speaks from experience, having coached at the 2021 Summer Olympic Games in Tokyo herself. 

“The landscape of sport continues to evolve and we are striving to stay at the cutting edge of performance, most importantly with athlete safety and wellness,” said Hill. “It is a testament to those who strive to improve themselves as coaches no matter what stage they are at in their career,” he said.

The UBC MHPCTL provides a unique opportunity for coaches to enrol in a graduate program without a formal bachelor degree, instead prioritizing recognized prior learning experience and qualifications for entry into the program. “This is a very innovative program and we are grateful to UBC for supporting life-long learning,” said Gallo.

With the average age of students enrolled in the program being 38 years old, this is truly a Pan-Canadian approach to professional development within coaching, and offers linkages to Canada’s National Coaching Certification Program. “We are grateful for our partnership with the Coaching Association of Canada, and the opportunity it provides to students to the coveted NCCP Advanced Coaching Diploma,” said Hill. Students in MHPCTL have the option of completing a one-year graduate certificate, which ladders into a two-year masters program.

“We wish all coaches and athletes at Canada Games success toward achieving their goals and hope that our coaches can connect while at the Games,” said Gallo.

Learn more about MHPCTL and the upcoming cohort.

The list of UBC MHPCTL coaches in PEI include:

Phyllis ChanBadmintonTeam BCHPCTL Certificate Graduate
Kraig DevlinKarateTeam BCMHPCTL Graduate
Nicole GarridoSpeed SkatingTeam BCCurrent MHPCTL Student
Jim JenningsKarateTeam OntarioMHPCTL Graduate
Chris ManhardCross Country SkiingTeam BCMHPCTL Graduate
Graham PollockFreestyle SkiingTeam BCCurrent HPCTL Student
Gabriel SyllaKarateTeam QuebecHPCTL Certificate Graduate
Robin UlrichHockeyTeam SaskatoonMHPCTL Graduate
Antoine VallièresGymnasticsTeam QuebecCurrent MHPCTL Student