Kudos to Mike Aronson and Tom Gross for organizing a great reception for the American Hockey Institute on Wednesday evening, Nov. 13, 2013. The Waterville Valley community came out in force to welcome the Institute’s hockey players and coaches and enjoyed a delicious Italian buffet at Legends Sports Bar.
New England Wolves head coach, Steve Jacobs, provided an informative overview of the goals of the Institute, introduced the other coaches in attendance, and then had each of the players grab the microphone and introduce themselves and share where they are from.
I’m a sucker for a guy in a tie, and was thus impressed with these well dressed, well mannered and well spoken young men. They and their families have invested heavily in their hockey experience by sending them to the Institute here in Waterville Valley. The players come from all over the U.S. and the world, including Slovakia, England, Canada, California, New Jersey, Arizona, Georgia, and New England. They are excellent hockey players and compete at an extremely high level. Their home games are played at the Waterville Valley Ice Arena and are open to the public. Go watch a game and cheer them on!
Hockey isn’t their only focus while they’re here in Waterville Valley. Each player must be a high school graduate. While at the Institute, they are required to complete college prep courses. College counseling and individualized curriculum are provided.
The institute’s mission says it all:
At the American Hockey Institute, our mission is to provide an elite hockey experience in a campus environment while maximizing potential through intense professional instruction. While focusing on the mental, physical and emotional development of our players, we will provide guidance, generate opportunities and encourage our players to use hockey to their advantage to create bridges to higher education.
While keeping the focus on the multitude of educational opportunities available, an athletic and educational assessment will be performed to target the appropriate fit for each student athlete. Our players will leave the program better prepared for the rigors of being a college student athlete with improved maturity, confidence, life skills, competitive spirit and hockey ability.
Pictured above (l-r) are Steve Jacobs (AHI Co-founder, President, Head Coach, Director of Player Advancement), Mike Aronson (Waterville Valley Resort Association Board of Directors & Waterville Valley Board of Selectmen) and Jay Gallant (AHI Assistant Coach)